Councilman Dustin Hillis heads up Atlanta's Public Safety Committee in his full time job, he's a critical care registered nurse and agreed with what Atlanta Officers are telling CBS46 about some of their patrol cars being on life support.
"We have cars rolling around with light bars out, brake lights our, and when I've spoken to some of our police officers across the city, some do not have air conditioning which is a concern when we get in the upper 80s and 90s, cars randomly cutting off.," says Hillis.
He says his priority going into this budget season is advocating for public safety officers.
"If we have the money to lavishly spend on ridiculous bonuses and hundred thousand dollar cars for executive protection, and we certainly should be able to find the money for our police fleet, for better pay for our officers and to be upgrading our precincts."
CBS46 asked APD Public Affairs Director Carlos Campos about the issue, and was sent the following statement.The Atlanta Police Department has almost 1,100 motor vehicles (includes motorcycles) in its fleet. Our cars run 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. While we routinely maintain these vehicles, they undergo a tremendous amount of wear-and-tear due to the around-the-clock demands placed on them as police vehicles running for three non-stop shifts a day.
We want to ensure our officers have safe and reliable equipment and work to routinely replace cars, typically on an annual basis, as they inevitably become unserviceable. We are in the process of purchasing and outfitting some new cars for 2018 that we hope to deploy to the field soon. Councilman Hillis also tells CB46 he's looking into doing something about some of the outdated police precincts.
Despite the shortages, APD says their ability to respond to emergencies has not been affected by their fleet issues.
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