TYLER, Texas (KLTV) – The Tyler Police Department is proposing the addition of a digital forensic specialist and a homeless coordinator to its ranks with the passing of the City’s 2021-2022 annual budget.
As the range, intensity and sophistication of computer and Internet-based crimes expand and evolve, the department saw the need to grow its investigation capabilities. The forensic specialist will give officers the opportunity to resolve more investigations and present stronger cases for prosecution.
“As we continue to rely on technology as a society, it is important to remain current on the types of technology platforms that may contain valuable evidence,” said Tyler Police Chief Jimmy Toler. “This includes the technology we use every day like computers, cellular phones, tablets and cloud storage to the technology that we are surrounded by in our daily lives like point of sale transactions, security cameras and videos, drones and gas pumps.”
The specialist will be required to attend in-person and online training courses to receive certifications to recover data from digital devices. The certifications demonstrate the data and information collected during an investigation is accurate and was collected using proper techniques and practices.
Adding a homeless coordinator allows the department to work closely with homeless residents and guide them to the available resources.
“This may include outreach to families and non-profits to address the causes,” Toler said. “It is our hope and belief that the long-term impact will reduce the homeless population and the number of calls for service, arrests and hospital transports of homeless residents.”
The homeless coordinator will research available resources to assist someone out of homelessness. The officer will also attend training to manage and approach individuals experiencing drug addiction and mental illness.
A tax rate of $0.269900 per $100 valuation has been proposed by the governing body of City of Tyler. This budget will raise more total property taxes than last year’s budget by $1,751,872 which is a 7.54% increase from last year’s budget, and of that amount, $442,570 is tax revenue to be raised from new property added to the tax roll this year.
The property tax rate increase, if adopted, will provide the two new police officers, two firefighters, a tower truck as well as other security and firefighting gear.
The City of Tyler will hold two public hearings on the proposed the Fiscal Year 2021-2022 budget and tax increase.
The first public hearing was held on Sept. 8 at 9 a.m. at Tyler City Hall.
City of Tyler Residents will have another opportunity for public input on the budget on Wednesday, Sept. 22 at 9 a.m at Tyler City Hall, 212 N. Bonner Ave. Following the public hearing, the budget will be voted on for adoption by the Tyler City Council.
All Tyler Council meetings can be watched live on Channel 3 and the City of Tyler’s Facebook page.
Copyright 2021 KLTV. All rights reserved.