The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is expected to resume the City of Austin Police Department on July 2, after it was resigned in May due to the expiration of Title 42.
In a statement obtained by FOX 7 in Austin, Joseph Chacon, Chief of the Austin Police Department (APD), said the partnership with DPS has already proved valuable in reducing crime and reducing response times.
“This new iteration will ensure that we continue as we consider the Board’s direction and drive the implementation strategy,” said Chacon.
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Austin teamed up with DPS in March after failed policies in the state capital led to fewer cops and more crime.
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FILE: Texas DPS trooper exits vehicle. (Texas DPS)
Texas DPS agreed to provide state troopers and agents to focus on traffic problems and violent crime, but also added that law enforcement would provide backup in emergencies.
The partnership was temporarily suspended in May to send troopers to border towns pending the repeal of Title 42, a Trump-era policy that allowed officials to deny migrants entry to the US over public health concerns amid the pandemic.
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On their return, troopers will be deployed at Chacon’s direction, the station reported, and his strategy will be based on traffic, violent crime and staffing.
Texas DPS detectives will also work with APD’s violent crime investigative units to help reduce gun violence.
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The two agencies will attend briefings together at the start of shifts, and while DPS can monitor APD radio channels, the trooper’s response will not be driven by calls.
“This partnership has proven to be a practical way to address Austin’s call volume and crime,” said Chacon. “We welcome DPS back to the city with a different approach to development. I will continue to review the data and deploy DPS alongside APD to protect and serve.”
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A member of the Austin, Texas Police Department stands guard during the Gold Cup Semifinal between the United States and Qatar on Thursday, July 29, 2021 at Q2 Stadium in Austin, TX. (Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
In February, Austin police officers, past and present, warned Fox News Digital that the police department was struggling because of funding during the 2020 riots. One source even told Fox News Digital that 30 officers filed retirement papers after the city council voted to approve a. to scrap a four-year contract that the city had previously agreed to, and instead pursue a one-year contract that the police union board had rejected.
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The department faced massive budget cuts from the City Council during the 2020 George Floyd unrest, which reduced police cadet classes and sent the workforce into a tailspin that could take more than 10 years to recover from. Mayor Steve Adler and then-Councilman Greg Casar led that council vote, which was unanimous. The vote to cut APD’s budget forced the department to reduce or jettison several specialized anti-crime units.
Casar was later elected to Congress as a Democrat from Texas’s 35th district.
Texas DPS troopers have statewide jurisdiction and have historically supported cities like San Antonio and Dallas to reduce crime rates.
Greg Wehner is a breaking news reporter for Fox News Digital.