02/27/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/28/2020 05:46
Today, DeKalb County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved CEO Michael Thurmond's proposed $1.4 billion budget for Fiscal Year 2020, which projects a $113.3 million rainy-day fund and prioritizes enhancements to public safety.
'The FY2020 budget reaffirms our commitment to fiscal integrity, accountability and improved service delivery,' said CEO Thurmond. 'I appreciate the support of Presiding Officer Steve Bradshaw, the Board of Commissioners and staff who worked to develop this budget, which is the result of prudent decision making and collaboration.'
The FY2020 budget prioritizes public safety spending, including pay increases and enhancements to reduce homicides and protect the public. To fund gang violence prevention initiatives, $300,000 was directly transferred from CEO Thurmond's office budget.
The Police Department will receive $194,000 to fund training in gang violence prevention strategies, acquire technology to process and analyze data from cell phones, and hire a crime analyst assigned to the Gang Unit to review and interpret crime trends and intelligence gathered in criminal investigations.
The District Attorney's Office will receive $303,000 to hire an intelligence data analyst for the Crime Strategies/Community Partnerships Unit to compile, process, and manage investigative data; fund an additional attorney and investigator to supplement the Major Crimes Unit; and provide associated funding for equipment. This proposal also funds technology to analyze cell phones and computers that will allow the District Attorney's Office to create a digital crime lab on par with state and federal law enforcement agencies.
Understanding that violence prevention requires partnerships and a holistic approach, DeKalb public safety personnel will receive an across-the-board 4 percent pay increase. This increase is valued at $5.4 million and applies to approximately 2,300 employees, including police officers, firefighters, code enforcement officers, E911 operators, sheriff's deputies and detention officers, and solicitor-general and district attorney investigators. This is the fourth public safety pay increase since 2017.
Other budget initiatives include: