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Why stop ombudsman?

In the Dec. 17 article entitled “Council delays ombudsman discussion” written by Mike Prager, am I reading this wrong, or is this a not-so-veiled threat?

The last paragraph reads, “In November, the council rejected the proposed police contract because it did not allow for enough independence by the ombudsman. Straub (police chief) warned that rejecting the proposed contract would send negotiations to a state arbitrator, who could order larger salary increases than … called for in the proposed agreement.”

What this sounds like to me is that if the citizens of Spokane don’t approve the proposed police contract, then we’re going to have to pay for it. Here’s the deal: We voted for more independence in the ombudsman’s office, and that’s all we are asking for. Why is the Police Department doing everything it can to stop this from happening? Is there something to hide? If not, then I would think the Police Department would welcome this kind of transparency.

Darryl Sargent



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