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Mayor Pugh's police recruitment problem

Mayor Catherine Pugh answers questions about a report on the city's police recruitment.
Mayor Catherine Pugh answers questions about a report on the city's police recruitment. (Kevin Richardson / Baltimore Sun)

First of all, I am glad that Mayor Catherine Pugh reads The Baltimore Sun and can find out out what is going on in Baltimore through the paper. The problem with slow-to-middling recruitment efforts is nothing new in Baltimore (“Pugh defends city’s efforts to recruit,” Feb. 7). Another term adopted by Mayor Pugh and her administration is a “smaller loss.” A loss is a loss, Mayor Pugh, and denotes a problem in your administration. How you try to characterize it makes no real difference.

Does the mayor have the statistics broken down and categorized as to why police are leaving the department? When will The Sun investigate and print the reasons? How many years do the people leaving have under their belts? The administration is only concerned with the replacement of people leaving as to why they are leaving. If it is possible to stop the losses, it could make the problem less serious.

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Ms. Pugh has suggested The Sun’s reporting is misleading, but no one explains what she was talking about. In what way misleading? And then someone finally addresses the real problem of the 500 vacant positions. City Councilman Brandon Scott stated correctly that the mayor needs to “cut the excuses and make the department operate as efficiently as possible.” My question to Mr. Scott and the City Council is exactly what are you doing to help the mayor solve the problem? There is definitely enough blame to go around, and the council shares in it. Remember the idea of working as a team for Baltimore and damn the politics?

And yes, Mayor Pugh, you did inherit the recruitment problem when you were elected two years ago. But after two years, that problem belongs to you. Remember all the promises you made in your campaign for mayor? And yes, you should expect the police commissioner to fix a lot of the problems. How many commissioners have you had so far? Hopefully, this one will stick around long enough to fix something or at least make it look better by “right-sizing.”

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So back to “right-sizing” a problem. Oops, I meant right-sizing the police department. Come to think of it, I am not really sure what the mayor is right-sizing! Of course, a smaller loss could result in right-sizing, I think. Well, it sure sounds good anyway.

Stas. Chrzanowski, Baltimore

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