Cities Are So Broke They're Outsourcing The Police

The new trend in government cost-cutting involves disbanding the police department, says the WSJ. The paper has an article about Maywood, a tiny city southeast of Los Angeles. The city lost its insurance after its carrier decided to cancel its policy “because of the $21 million in legal expenses and judgments against the city stemming from the conduct of its police department.” This means that Maywood can’t employ anyone.

So, what are they doing? Outsourcing everything, even city hall. Los Angeles County will provide the police force, and a neighboring town has agreed to run Maywood’s city hall. And far from being an embarrassment, Maywood is an example to other cities looking to cut costs:

“We’re on the cutting edge here. We’re the tip of the spear,” said Magdalena Prado, Maywood’s community-relations officer, who works for the city as a contractor. Ms. Prado said she has gotten inquiries from cities across the country “wanting to know how this is going to play out. They’re facing their own financial strains and looking to us as an example.”

The article names a bunch of cities that, while not as extreme as Maywood, are looking for any way they can remove employees from their payroll and hire outside contractors.

Cities Rent Police, Janitors to Save Cash [WSJ]