GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Grand Rapids City Commission on Tuesday approved the city’s 2020 budget.
Among that is more money for the Grand Rapids Police Department to add two new community policing officers. It will also pay for three new civilian employee positions, jobs meant to free up three officers for community policing posts. For years, GRPD has asked for 10 more officers. Additionally, the city is hiring two crime analysts, a crisis intervention specialist and a new position with the city manager’s office to focus on police-community relations.
Also included in the budget is a pilot program to put bathrooms in the Heartside neighborhood, a project to add more bus shelters, investments for about 500 parking spaces and parking structure upgrades.
Other funding will go to the next phase of the effort to restore the rapids to the Grand River, park improvements under a dedicated millage and buying more land for parks, and restoring Alexander Calder’s iconic stabile La Grande Vitesse in Calder Plaza, among other things.
The budget reduces the property tax millage rate from 8.9710 to 8.9011 mills.