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Council members fear crime will increase if more cops tax fails

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Council members fear crime will increase if more cops tax fails

By Spencer Lubitz. CREATED Sep 18, 2013

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Some Las Vegas City Council members said they’re concerned crime will increase if the Clark County Commission doesn't approve the sheriff’s more cops tax.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is a partnership between Clark County and the City of Las Vegas; the county covers 60-percent of the bill, while the city covers the other 40-percent.

If the sheriff gets his wish, the county sales tax would rise by .15-percent to balance his budget and allow for more officers, something several commissioners have been reluctant to approve.

A surprise third option was presented when Commissioner Susan Brager suggested what she believes is a compromise; reducing the burden on taxpayers by cutting the increase in half, while asking the sheriff to trim his budget.

"I am being responsible, I feel like saving taxpayers $24-$28 million," said Brager.

Some Las Vegas City Council members worry that crime will rise if commissioners don’t give police the full amount the sheriff asked for.

"If they dilute this much further, we're going to be in danger," said Councilman Bob Coffin. "We are now at the point that we don't have enough police as it is."

The sales tax vote will happen at the next commission meeting on Oct. 1.
 
It's not looking too good for the sheriff right now. The sales tax needs a super majority to pass, meaning five of the seven commissioners would have to vote yes and Commissioners Brager and Steve Sisolak said will not support that larger increase.

Action News contacted Metro for a comment, but they said this is an issue between the city and the county.

Spencer Lubitz

Spencer Lubitz

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Spencer Lubitz is a general assignment reporter for Action News.