Earlier this week, Harris County Commissioners Court held a special meeting to discuss a budget plan for Short Fiscal Year 2022 (SFY 2022), which runs from March 2022 through September 2022. The County Administrator put forth a preliminary draft
based off the requests made by department heads, but it only partially funded the requests made by law enforcement.
“Our top three priorities are crime, crime, and crime. Our budget needs to reflect that,” said Commissioner Tom Ramsey. “The proposed budget only fulfills 18% of law enforcement requests, which is unacceptable when we’re seeing crime at an all-time high. I disagree with what’s currently being proposed.”
Law enforcement requests for SFY 2022 include:
• $7.5M to fund new prosecutors and support staff for the District Attorney’s Office
• $18M to fund additional patrol officers and investigators for the Sheriff’s Office
• $3.5M to fund Sheriff’s Office detention operations
• $6.1M to fund additional patrol officers and equipment for the Constables
• $500K to fund inspections and emergency response efforts for the Fire Marshal’s Office
(Note: The numbers listed above are each agency’s request in addition to their baseline
“Innocent people are being murdered at alarming rates, and Harris County is now the capital of crime. It’s time we stop experimenting and start doing what works. One example is adding the 50 patrol officers in underserved areas, which I requested last year,” said Commissioner Ramsey. “I’m coming up with a plan to give law enforcement everything they’re asking for. I really hope my colleagues will support it. It’s what our law enforcement agencies need, and it’s what our residents deserve.”
Commissioner Ramsey and his team are finalizing a budget proposal and determining priorities that would achieve all law enforcement requests. He will present a plan at the next Commissioners Court meeting scheduled for Tuesday, February 8th, which is also when a budget will be approved.
For more information on Commissioners Court meetings and to watch it live, visit agenda.harriscountytx.gov.