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City Council Approves Restoring Power Of Detroit Board Of Police Commissioners

DETROIT (WWJ) - The powers of the Detroit Board of Police Commissioners -- which were stripped during the city's bankruptcy by the city's ex-emergency manager -- will be restored. The decision to restore power comes from a unanimous vote by Detroit City Council.

Board of Police Commissioners Vice Chairman Willie Bell spoke to WWJ's Vickie Thomas about issues of importance to the board.

"There are issues forthcoming like body cameras - we are in support of that - we have issues about hiring - we are supportive of that -- and retention of officers - so if we go forward, the mayor set the tone in terms of public safety in Detroit - and the Chief of Police, they run day-to-day but we want to be involved in that process in terms of making sure we provide a quality service and we have input from a civilian board," said Bell.

Council Member Mary Sheffield says it's time to have the board back in place.

" ... we have come up approaching a year now, and it's time for full restoration, again, if we look at what's going on nationally with the increasing tension between police and community, it's imperative that we have full functioning board of police commissioners in the city of Detroit," said Sheffield.

In 2013, former Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr issued an order that allowed Police Chief James Craig to bypass the board -- the powers of the board will be restored in December.


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