In regards to city council wanting to charge residents for using emergency services:
For the low-income families that do have to deal with robberies, rape, criminal endangerment, and that want to help clean up the city as much as the next person — would you fear that lack of funds would cause citizens to take matters into their own hands versus using law enforcement?
I once was asked to call an ambulance by an extremely inebriated Native American who passed out drunk in the bathroom of my workplace with two Colt-45 beer cans next to him at 2 p.m. He tried to assault the EMTs who arrived and they ended up needing police assistance. Sadly, I was told by one EMT the person was taken to the emergency room the previous day and assaulted a physician. They were unable to take him back to the reservation because of "discrimination."
I also called to have someone check on the well-being of a man who was laying lifeless near an intersection. Should I have risked my safety and left my 2-year-old child in her car seat, with the vehicle locked to see if he had a pulse?
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What if the Billings PD started using quotas again, and used the funds from minor traffic offenders to help obtain $25 million? If I gave up my dashcam footage, I could write at least a dozen traffic tickets in one day, I even offered to volunteer my dashcam and time to go through the footage.