Homeless Issues Committee Unanimously agreed to ask the police and city officials to apologize to the homeless persons who last all their worldly possession on State St. when the police and parks department broke the law and threw their stuff in a dump truck. More details on the incident here, and here.
As a snarky side note, notice that the person chosen to replace Daniel Callahan (who was kicked off the committee for an alleged incident by County Executive Joe Parisi) did not attend. Danny did. Also, suspiciously missing from the meeting was United Way and Porchlight.
October 25, 2012
Dear Mayor Soglin, City of Madison Alders, Chief Wray, and other City Department Directors:
The Madison Police Department was invited to appear at our October 23, 2012 meeting to discuss the October 10, 2012 disposal of personal property from Veteran’s Plaza. The following committee members were in attendance: Mr. Michael Basford, Asst. Chief John Davenport, County Supervisors Dianne Hesselbein, Leland Pan, Heidi Wegleitner, and Nick Zweifel; Ms. Sofia Martinez, Ald. Larry Palm, and Mr. Ulysses Williams. Captain Gloede appeared, on behalf of the Madison Police Department, and provided testimony regarding his understanding of the facts as they had been set forth in the associated incident report.
Based on testimony from Captain Gloede, information from Assistant Chief Davenport, and public comment, it is our understanding that this was not the first time property belonging to homeless persons had been disposed of in this manner. We further understand this is not a new issue and Wis. Stats. s. 170.105 sets forth the City’s obligations with respect to property found by public officials. Captain Gloede reported that there is an upcoming city staff meeting to review the processes to deal with these types of situations. Finally, it was reported that the City of Madison has not issued an apology regarding this disposal nor offered restitution for damages suffered by the victims.
Our committee unanimously passed a motion to request the following actions of the City: (1) An apology be sent to the victims; (2) Schedule a settlement conference with the victims to resolve their claims and compensate them for damages suffered; and (3) Report back to this committee on the policy review being conducted. We request that the City take these initial steps within thirty (30) days.
Because we have both city and county officials on our committee, we are also concerned with Dane County’s compliance with statutory requirements for property found by public officials. We are also requesting a report from County officials regarding procedures the County has in place to ensure statutory compliance.
Thank you for your attention to this important issue and your anticipated cooperation.
Homeless Issues Committee
Members: Michael Basford, Chair, Supervisor Heidi M. Wegleitner, Vice-Chair,
Ms. Deedra Atkinson, Sup. Dianne Hesselbein, Ald. Bridget Maniaci, Ms. Sofia Martinez, Ald. Larry Palm, Sup. Leland Pan, Mr. Steve Schooler, Mr. Ulysses Williams, Chief Noble Wray, Sup Nick Zweifel
cc: County Executive Parisi, Dane County Supervisors, and Dane County Department Directors
Thank you committee!!! There may be more details from the meeting available later if I can get to it.
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