Citizens Police Review Board can send one member to conference

Monday, May 3, 2010 | 10:30 p.m. CDT; updated 8:32 a.m. CDT, Tuesday, May 4, 2010

COLUMBIA — One member of the Citizens Police Review Board will be able to attend a conference in Seattle using city money.

In a 4-2 vote Monday, the Columbia City Council agreed to amend the request from the Citizens Police Review Board to send two members to the conference. The amendment allots up to $2,200 to send one board member to the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement conference in Seattle from Sept. 20 to 23.

Break down of conference costs

Boardwoman Ellen LoCurto-Martinez said the Citizens Police Review Board intended to ask for $4,044 originally from the Columbia City Council. Martinez broke down the $4,044 the Citizens Police Review Board requested for two members to attend the conference.

The cost per person is:

  • Registration: $350
  • Airfare: $500
  • Hotel: $920
  • Food: $252 ($42 per day)

LoCurto-Martinez originally calculated the cost of food for six days, but attendees would only be in Seattle for five. She recalculated her request and at the council meeting asked for $3,600 for two people.

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Boardwoman Ellen LoCurto-Martinez spoke on behalf of the Citizens Police Review Board. The board originally asked for $4,044 to send two people to the conference. At the meeting, Martinez said the calculations were off and that they would only need around $3,600 to send both people.

Even with the cost reduction, Mayor Bob McDavid called the request "excessive."

"Columbia is spending more than it takes in," McDavid said.

The board also asked for $2,000 to print brochures. The amendment gives it $1000.

Fifth Ward Councilwoman Laura Nauser and Sixth Ward Councilwoman Barbara Hoppe voted against the amendment. First Ward Councilman Paul Sturtz did not attend the meeting.

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