New York attorney general recommends reducing mayor’s power over police

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By Jonathan Allen

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James recommended that New York City’s mayor give up sole control over the city police commissioner’s hiring, in a preliminary report released on Wednesday on her probe into the policing of recent protests.

She urged the creation of a commission with representatives from the mayor, the City Council, the public advocate and the comptroller who would have control over hiring and promotion of senior New York Police Department officials. The commission would have final say on the department’s budget and disciplining of officers.

“There should be an entirely new accountability structure for NYPD,” James said in her report, noting that “the public lacks a way to have meaningful input on the policies and major decisions that NYPD chooses to make.”

Her investigation began in May after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said he was alarmed by “disturbing violent clashes” between NYPD officers and New Yorkers protesting against police violence, sparked by the killing in Minneapolis of George Floyd.

James told reporters on a conference call her investigation was ongoing and a final report and set of recommendations would be released later.

(Reporting by Jonathan Allen; Editing by Richard Chang)

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