LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and city officials Monday spoke out against California’s plan to move state prisoners into local jails to relieve overcrowding.

“Sacramento is transferring more than 4,200 offenders to Los Angeles and not a single dollar to help with the burden,” Villaraigosa said.

KNX 1070’s Pete Demetriou reports the “Public Safety Realignment Act” could have a big impact on the effectiveness of both the LAPD and City Hall.

L.A. City Controller Wendy Greuel said the number of inmates will devastate local city budgets and communities.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said that under the plan he will have to divert 150 officers from patrol duties to deal with probation supervision and compliance of released prisoners. It’s a move that could lead to an increase in emergency response time and an overall decrease in public safety.

“That’s the equivalent of half of one of our patrol divisions,” said Beck. “So 911 calls will take longer to answer, reports will take longer to write, and our system will suffer because of an unfunded mandate placed on us by the state.”

Police Chief Charlie Beck said losing those officers may mean an increase in emergency response time.

“We often talk about what would be the final straw that breaks the back of public safety. Well, I would put forward that this is not a straw, this is a load of hay,” Beck said.

L.A. City Councilman Mitch Englander said the police transfers were, “The equivalent of sending one of our officers out on the street with an empty gun.”

Governor Jerry Brown admits there will be some bumps in the road.

“Every year, 110,000 people enter our prisons and, every year, 110,000 people go out,” Brown said. “It’s a completely broken system that was mindlessly expanded without understanding the consequences that we’re now dealing with.”

Pressure is mounting for officials to Sacramento to find the money in the state’s dwindling coffers to help the cities meet the public safety demands through the final release dates in 2012.

Comments (14)
  1. John says:

    Here’s a thought. Make ignition interlock devices mandatory in the state for all cars instead of just those that get a DUI. If the drunks can’t start ANY car, they can’t drive. If they can’t drive, they can’t get caught for DUI. That should decrease the number of arrests significantly and relieve some pressure on the jails.

  2. George Renaud says:

    80% of police incidents involve alcohol. The Madison Avenue designed ads always show a positive image of reality in their ads for alcohol. The truth is that crime is not positive. Citizens pay a lot of money to protect us from alcohol abusers. Infidelity, broken marriages, divorce, domestic abuse, car accidents, health problems, are never shown in the ads. Hospitals and health insurers as well as employers pay a lot of money and waste a lot of time fixing and paying for alcohol related problems. I look around my neighborhood and see the terrible examples the kids see of people going to liquor stores. Drunks all over town.

    1. John says:

      I don’t care if someone gets drunk in the privacy of his/her home or in a bar. I just don’t like the thought of them behind the wheel. Of course, if you make interlock devices mandatory, you lose all that nice revenue for the courts. It’s a total scam when you think about it. “We have a device that can eliminate and dangerous threat to public safety and won’t cost all that much if added when the car is manufactured since it will be made in volume as opposed to a small amount. Let’s not use it until you put people’s lives in danger.”

      Heck you could up DUI to a felony in all cases if every car has interlocks. After all, you would have to be seriously dedicated to driving drunk to beat the system if everyone had to follow it.

  3. Phillips Claire says:

    The Supreme Court ordered the release due to the overcrowding and inhumane conditions in our state prisons. Realignment simply transfers those inmates to our already overcrowded jails – 20 of which are currently operating under Court ordered population caps. LA county, our largest system, has been under the watch of Feds for decades for the same exact issues. This shell game will force the Supreme Court to intervene again once our jail conditions worsen due to realignment. In the meantime, many of our counties will go bankrupt and we will experience a huge spike in crime. Brown is pinning his hopes on a voter approved tax increase and a constitutional amendment to guarantee future funding for the financial and public safety burden being taken on by our local governments. Unfortunately for our counties, by November 2012, the problems created by realignment will be so painfully obvious to all that any hope for a voter approved tax increase to fund this mess will be gone. Brown admits that there will be some “bumps in the road.” But when the “bumps” are so risky, dangerous, and predictable, why not avoid them?

    1. John says:

      Because Brown supports the Unions and things like privatized prisons to lessen the burdens don’t fit into his politics. Never mind that as a rule, jais are more dangerous and less regimented than prisons so the whole concept behind this is flawed out of the gate.

  4. Karen says:

    This is not new? I heard about this months ago. Why in the world hasn’t Antonio said anything until now? What is wrong with this mayor? Capital L for Loser.

  5. gwendollynn says:

    I agree with you Karen. This move has been talked about for months why would Antonio wait until now to object???????? He thought that there was $$$$$$attached to it. Which in effect would allow him money to (do what he\
    Does best) hire more police. You are absolutely correct Karen he is a LOSER!!!!!!

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  8. Ben says:

    Instead move those idiots to Frisco

  9. Thats Right says:

    Enforce immigration laws and you wouldn’t have to worry about 50% of these inmates.

    You reap what you sow, Tony.

  10. wgaf says:

    The fact is, while on parole you can be violated for anything, a rolling stop, loud music, littering, not wearing a seat belt, the list goes on. The overpaid incompetent moron aS$wipe prison guards have to get paid somehow thanks to all the puS$ies that voted for the Three Strikes Law and everything else including AS$hat Brown who has his lips firmly wrapped around the guards’ balls.

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