Councilmember Nick Licata
LICATA SPONSORS POLICE ACCOUNTABILITY LEGISLATION
Bill would require public hearing before labor negotiations with police unions
SEATTLE—Councilmember Nick Licata announced today that he will be sponsoring new legislation aimed at increasing police accountability. The new bill would require that the Council hold a public hearing on police accountability at least ninety days before the City begins collective bargaining on a new contract with the Seattle Police Officer’s Guild (SPOG) or the Seattle Police Management Association. Councilmember Licata said, “As elected officials, we have a responsibility to hear from the public on these vital issues before entering into labor negotiations with the police.” The SPOG represents all uniformed members in the Seattle Police Department up to and including sergeants, while the Seattle Police Management Association represents all lieutenants and captains in the Seattle Police Department.
The hearing would be informational only and would not establish the City’s position in collective bargaining. The new bill builds on Resolution 30871 where the City recognized “the interests expressed by individuals at the April 18, 2006 public hearing for changes in the City’s collective bargaining process with the SPOG” and in the resolution also promised to “consider in good faith whether and how to carry forward these interests through various means including, but not limited to...negotiation of applicable collective bargaining agreement terms with SPOG.”
Councilmember Licata said, “Effective policing depends on the public’s confidence in the fairness and integrity of the Seattle Police Department and its policing practices. I hope these hearing will promote that confidence” On Monday, January 28, the bill will be referred to a Council Committee where it will be reviewed before being voted on by the Full Council later this year.