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Poloncarz names appointees to Erie County Police Reform and Reinvention Collaborative Task Force

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Mon, Sep 14th 2020 12:10 pm

13 at-large appointments comprise task force; group empaneled in response to Cuomo’s executive order

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz announced his establishment of the Erie County Police Reform and Reinvention Collaborative Task Force, pursuant to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive order 203. Signed in June following the death of George Floyd, the executive order mandates local governments to, among other items, “perform a comprehensive review of current police force deployments, strategies, policies, procedures, and practices, and develop a plan to improve such deployments, strategies, policies, procedures, and practices, for the purposes of addressing the particular needs of the communities served by such police agency and promote community engagement to foster trust, fairness, and legitimacy, and to address any racial bias and disproportionate policing of communities of color.”

The task force will review the Erie County Sheriff’s Office’s police services division.

The 13 members of the task force include:

  1. Joseph Agro, Esq.
  2. Melodie Baker
  3. Kevin Barnas
  4. Ysaias Feliz
  5. Martin Scott Floss Ph.D.
  6. Jonathan Miles Gresham, Esq
  7. Town of Eden Supervisor Melissa Hartman
  8. Holly L. Hubert
  9. Springville Mayor William Krebs
  10. Margaret Murphy, Esq.
  11. Olivia Owens
  12. Brittany Pemberthy, Esq.
  13. Keith White 

Poloncarz said, “The individuals who comprise the task force come from a variety of professional backgrounds and bring invaluable legal, law enforcement, community representation and governmental experience to the task. I thank them for collaborating as a team on this endeavor and helping to envision and create law enforcement policies and procedures that reduce racial disparities, meet the needs of the community, and promote trust, fairness and accountability.”

The task force is expected to meet for the first time later in September. Members are charged with creating a plan to adopt and implement the recommendations resulting from their policy and procedural review as well as consultations with local law enforcement, community members and organizations, interested nonprofit and faith-based community groups, and local elected officials, among others. Community input will be welcomed and public comments taken into consideration in development of the group’s final plan, which must be adopted as a local law no later than April 1, 2021.

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