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'Reducing Crime by Prevention'

August 10, 1989

Your lead story (Times, July 27) dealt with the recently released independent Long Beach study of the Police Department.

The study clearly shows that the city does not need the 25% increase in officers (about $16 million per year) that Police Chief Lawrence Binkley and the City Council have been asking for, if the present police force is used more efficiently.

Yet, as your story reports, some council members are still calling for more police. Do they seriously think the public will vote to raise their taxes to subsidize an inefficiently managed Police Department?

Long Beach now has a golden opportunity to do something about reducing crime by prevention, not simply by pouring more police on the streets.

What is needed is to apply all available--and some new--funding sources in combating the causes of crime (through) programs such as drug rehabilitation centers, parks and recreation, job training and jobs.

The city is considering placing a $6-million special tax on the ballot to enhance recreational facilities. These are the kinds of crime-fighting programs Long Beach needs.

SID SOLOMON

Long Beach

Solomon is political action chairman of Long Beach Area Citizens Involved.

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