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Palm Springs City Council approves PSUSD SRO contract with amendment on funding

KESQ

The Palm Springs City Council voted 4-1 to approve a new contract for school resource officers, however, there was an added amendment on the source of funding.

The move brings the Palm Springs Unified School District one step closer to bringing back a full-time police officer at the Palm Springs High School and Desert Learning Academy campuses. The PSUSD board of education still needs to approve the contract, which had an added amendment from the council regarding the use of LCAP funds.

The council requested that PSUSD not use LCAP funding to pay for the officers.

LCAP, or Local Control Accountability Plan, is a fund that is designed to increase or improve support services for low-income, English learner, and foster youth students.

The district's proposed contract would've used up to $182,209 to pay for the SROs. Councilmembers' proposed that the city make up the difference so the funds are used to help the city's students in need.

PSUSD's budget for all SROs is $400,000. The city's proposal will subsidize approximately $100,000 back into that fund.

Councilmember Dennis Woods brought up concerns that the leftover funding could be used in other cities.

"We have no idea how the board is going to spend $100,000 in LCAP money, they have not laid that out for us whatsoever. They could put it towards another community's resource officer. It just becomes very dicey," Woods said.

PSUSD Superintendent Mike Swize, who was on hand to answer councilmembers' questions, said he would recommend that the additional funding be used for overall support, such as mental health, counseling, social worker support, etc.

The PSUSD board of education has already approved SRO contracts with the Cathedral City & Desert Hot Springs police departments & the Riverside County Sheriff's Department.

The Desert Hot Springs City Council still needs to vote on the SRO contract for its high school. Police Chief Jim Henson told News Channel 3's Jake Ingrassia on Wednesday that he expects SROs to return to DHS by the end of the month.

Stay with News Channel 3 for continuing updates.

Jesus Reyes

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