On this week’s episode of OPB Politics Now, reporters Dirk VanderHart, Rebecca Ellis and Jonathan Levinson dissect a compromise plan to address rising gun violence in Portland.
Mayor Ted Wheeler and leaders of the Portland Police Bureau had pushed to bring back the controversial gun violence reduction team, a special unit that was disbanded amid complaints its members disproportionately targeted people of color.
Instead, the deal reached this week gives $1.4 million to the city’s Parks & Recreation bureau to hire park rangers, who would patrol the city’s parks and neighborhoods through the end of the year. Another $4.1 million would go to grants for nonprofits working with the city’s Office of Violence Prevention to reduce gun violence.
The Police Bureau doesn’t receive any new money. But the mayor did receive the council’s approval to reassign 12 officers and two sergeants to form a new gun violence intervention team.