Mayor Margo’s Priorities

From an El Paso Times story about a recent mayoral candidate forum:

[Incumbent Mayor Dee] Margo agreed with [candidate Carlos] Gallinar that all police officers need body cameras, but said that is not financially feasible due to the large costs associated with storing camera data.

The City of El Paso is the 20th biggest city in the U.S., and we can’t afford body cameras? When lots of other cities can? What have we been spending our money on?

Mayor Margo was in office when City Council voted to give $40 million to Great Wolf Resorts. Mayor Margo presided over the issuance of almost $100 million in Certificates of Obligation, debt issued without voter approval, for “Quality of Life” projects. And now he’s balking at spending money for body cameras?

He doesn’t mind spending taxpayers’ dollars for vanity projects, but when it comes to money that might actually help the citizens, and the cops, for that matter, we can’t afford it.

11 comments

  1. Margo (and Leeser): disastrous future IF they are re-elected. No plans for improving/reforming EPPD in any of the forums.

  2. I remember a safety bond election last year that was passed for the Police and Fire Departments. So you mean some of this money could not be used to buy the body cameras and storage for the safety of El Paso?

    1. There’s plenty of money for the things that they want. But if it’s for the citizens, we can’t afford it.

  3. Interesting that we have a former mayor promising good things like examining the city manager position.
    We have a current mayor who’s done nothing for the city.
    We have a candidate whose platform is basically defunding the police.
    We have a candidate who is worried more about climate change than fixing the city problems.
    We have two candidates who haven’t even given out their platforms yet.
    Of the six, only Leeser and Margo are showing tv ads.
    If I didn’t know any better, I’d say we should vote for the Leeser of the evils.

      1. Which of the others do you think we should vote for then? Only GOOD reason to vote for him is that he didn’t actively do anything to harm the community. Or do we write in a candidate, not vote, or vote for one of the two unknowns?

    1. Have you bothered to look at the campaign website for Carbajal? It covers a large range of issues and is hardly “basically defunding the police,” or “more worried about climate change than fixing the city problems.” (Not sure which of these comments you apply to Carbajal and which to Gallinar.) Meantime, could it be that the wealthy folks in town have given enough money to Leeser and Margo to facilitate lots of TV ads…wonder why???

  4. Dee Margo is only interested in helping his big money backers, Woody Hunt and Paul Foster. Look at his voting record. Margo has worked with City Manager Tommy Boy to help provide to Woody and Foster. Look at the Hunt High Rise Building in downtown. Look at the Plaza Hotel with Parking Garage along with the 2400 acres of land in Northeast to Paul Foster.

    Time to get rid of Papa Margo and Tommy Boy. It is time for the citizens to take back El Paso.

    1. You can’t prove a negative.

      That click-baity article you cited makes the point that body cameras alone don’t reduce police brutality. They need to be accompanied by policies that optimize their utilization.

      How much of the heavy-handedness of the police during the recent civil unrest would have been noticed without civilian video? How much wasn’t caught on camera?

      The police unions argue that body cams might make an officer hesitate to use deadly force, knowing that they’re being recorded, and that increases the danger for cops. But maybe they should hesitate to use deadly force. Lots of cops are trigger happy.

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