Madison Common Council considering $400,000 review of police dep - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Madison Common Council considering $400,000 review of police department

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MADISON (WKOW) -- The Common Council looks poised to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on an independent review of the Madison Police Department.

The Council created an ad hoc police review committee after the officer-involved shooting of Tony Robinson in March 2015.

The original plan was to spend $50,000 on the review, but the Council's Board of Estimates passed a measure earlier this week to spend up to $400,000.

Police Chief Mike Koval believes taxpayers will not see the best use of that money, telling 27 News those dollars would be better used for programs and services in some of the city's neediest neighborhoods.

But Alder Shiva Bidar-Sielaff said many of the people in those neighborhoods are the ones that want to see an honest assessment of the police department.

"Given the percentage that the police department represents of the total city budget, this is actually a pretty small amount to make sure again that there is a level of confidence and trust," said Alder Bidar-Sielaff.

Chief Koval adds that his department is already one of the most transparent law enforcement agencies in the state, filling over 28,000 open records requests each year.    

"It's not like we're unwilling to share or unwilling to learn or how we can be better at system improvements," said Chief Koval. "So we're going to cooperate. we've cooperated from the jump street."

The City Council plans to vote on the additional funding for the independent review June 7.

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