The City of Peekskill Police Reform Task Force recently met to review its purpose, establish committees, appoint officers and create a schedule of public and confidential meetings. The purpose of the Task Force is to respond to Governor Cuomo’s Emergency Order calling upon City Managers and Police Chiefs to create a community dialogue around police reform issues and propose recommendations to the City Council by April 2021.
In July and August, the City Manager and Police Chief convened an Organizing Committee to study the governor’s order and to recruit a Task Force of community members and policy experts to facilitate community engagement. The full Task Force convened a public kickoff meeting and heard public comment on October 1, a meeting that was broadcast on TV and accessible via Zoom and in-person at the Neighborhood Center. The Task Force met again on October 8 to establish its structure, and on October 15 to elect a chair, finalize committees and appoint Task Force members to these committees.
Antonio Knott and Mayor Andre Rainey were voted as co-chairs of the Task Force. Eileen Sullivan was also elected as Secretary. For a complete list of Task Force members, visit: https://bit.ly/2FTQ4qR.
Open Meetings Schedule: The Task Force members have adopted a minimum schedule of public meetings at 7:00pm, via Zoom, on November 5, December 17 and January 21. Other dates may be added. These meetings will include time for public comment, as well as Task Force committee reports and invited presentations. Meeting details will be posted to the Task Force webpage and promoted via the City’s Facebook page. While the Task Force is committed to public participation and bound by the Governor’s Order to solicit and incorporate public comment, it isn’t bound by the NYS Open Meetings law and will conduct non-public working sessions with intent to report back during public meetings.
Working Meetings Schedule: The Task Force members have adopted a calendar of weekly working meetings during which committees will convene and then report out to the full Task Force.
Committees: Each committee has an appointed chair. Committees will convene on an ad hoc basis, as needed, to develop recommendations. Committee chairs may invite additional members of the public to attend and serve. Committees and their chairs, with contact information, are:
- Education, Training and Equipment – Valerie Eaton, email@example.com
- Community Engagement – Jennifer Carpenter, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Policies and Procedures – Derek Wright, email@example.com
- Transparency and Accountability – Joseph Teel, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Recruitment and Hiring – Tricia Pickering, Patriciaapick@gmail.com
- Organizing Committee – Antonio Knott, email@example.com
Public Participation: The public is invited to participate in several ways:
- Att end a public meeting to listen or make comment.
- Contact a committee chair to get involved in a committee.
- Review Task Force information available on the City website.
- Submit written comments to the Task Force email address. Comments will be shared with the whole Task Force (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Submit written comments on the draft report to the City Council when this becomes available in early 2021.
- Attend City Council meetings when Task Force recommendations are discussed.
Peekskill City Hall is located at 840 Main Street in Peekskill, N.Y. and can be reached at 914-737-3400. For the latest news and updates, visit the City of Peekskill online at www.cityofpeekskill.com and on Facebook (@PeekskillGov).