May 9, 2017
Stockton, CA. – Last month it was reported that the City of Stockton under the direction of Mayor Michael Tubbs paid over $18,000 Stockton Police overtime costs to respond to residents voicing their concerns over police involved killings at city council meetings in February and March. As reported by 209 Times those meetings descended into chaos when Mayor Tubbs directed riot police to confront and physically remove residents associated with Black Lives Matter and family and friends of Colby Friday whose killing by Officer David Wells has yet to be explained after SPD changed their story three times with three different versions.
What has not been reported was the full cost to have up to 50 officers posted up at city hall for several hours as a security detachment should Mayor Tubbs call them in again to deal with activists he is not fond of and who have been openly critical of his lack of leadership on the matter.
The true cost, not just overtime, is much higher than reported by other media outlets and for March 7th actually $15,000 more than reported.
209 Times has received the cost from the city after submitting a public information request:
February 7- $4,793.93
February 21- $6,858.39
March 7- $25,248.57
March 28- $33,078.07
The cost for March 28th stands out because not only is it significantly higher, but there were no activists present or protests planned. It matches the cost of the three previous meetings combined. The average cost for the police department to cover the entire city for a 10 hour shift is $26,141 according to police spokesman officer Joseph Silva.
These costs become even more outrageous when considering that no threat had been present for any of the meetings and the sane protests and speaking out have occurred under the previous mayors Ann Johnston and Anthony Silva and riot police had never been called in or stationed for hours at city hall. Mayor Tubbs reliance on the police presence has been unprecedented.
They have even been used to escort him to his car with claim that it was police who insisted not Tubbs himself yet that same escort is not provided for the women council members leaving the meetings.
Michael Tubbs has objected to taking responsibility even calling a news reporter a “liar” for reporting the facts.
While local news outlets and pundits have made it a point to question if “protestors” “disrupting” council meetings will be the new norm with Tubbs as mayor, the greater question is the using stockton police officers as what amounts to a personal security detachment at a high cost to tax payers both financially and resources. With Stockton’s sales tax being the highest in California to pay for more police in California’s 2nd most violent city, the city has limited resources.