Mesa police, fire departments planning budget cuts

Posted: Updated:

MESA -- Mesa's new police chief says his department is cutting $6.4 million from its operating budget for the coming fiscal year.

That's a 5 percent cut, on top of more than $13 million that was slashed from the department this year.

Police Chief Frank Milstead and his command staff outlined Thursday a long list of reductions, from eliminating vehicles to reducing aviation to reducing front-counter hours at the main police station. The cuts would slice two vacant jobs in the records unit and 17 civilian positions overall.

Mesa Fire Chief Harry Beck also told the City Council that he will slash his department's budget by $2.7 million, also a 5 percent cut. The city is struggling to close a $19.6 million general-fund shortfall for the fiscal year that begins July 1.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)