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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Wednesday, June 19, 2024

City alders seek out additional police, arts funding in 2014

The Madison Common Council discussed possible amendments to the proposed 2014 Executive Operating Budget Tuesday night, including increasing funding for the Overture Center for the Arts and downtown safety.

Due to community members voicing concern about the transparency of internal budget negotiations, the council scheduled a special meeting to discuss the amendments alders are thinking about adding to Madison Mayor Paul Soglin’s proposed operating budget, said Ald. Scott Resnick, District 8.

Resnick said there was a “resounding sentiment” among alders on a few of the key issues discussed.

The council was largely in favor of an amendment that would raise the Overture Center’s current funding from $1.5 million to $1.6 million.

Alders also talked about how money allotted for police overtime should be distributed. Resnick argued the money should go to the central district, which services the downtown and parts of the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus.

“There’s also quite a bit on campus safety that we were talking about,” Resnick said, including the Downtown Safety Initiative.

The Downtown Safety Initiative started in 2007 when the city allotted $100,000 to place police officers in troublesome areas in the downtown district, such as State Street during bar times, usually 11 p.m. until 3 a.m. from Thursdays through Saturdays. The goal of the initiative was to decrease crimes downtown by increasing police presence.

Alders will continue to negotiate amendments before they vote on the capital and operating budgets in the beginning of November.

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