Leaders of Cities and Towns with Broward County Sheriff's Office Contracts Convene in Cooper City

Cooper City Mayor Greg Ross convened a meeting with leaders of Broward County municipalities, which have contracts with the Broward Sheriff's Office, on Wednesday, July 14, 2021 in Cooper City City Hall.  

Mayor Ross extended the invite to the mayors of other Broward County towns and cities that currently contract, or are considering contracting, with BSO for police and/or fire services.  Several mayors, city managers, and commissioners attended the meeting which was also attended by Broward County Mayor Steve Geller.

Prior to the meeting day, BSO had provided notice that Broward County Sheriff Gregory Tony would attend the meeting, where Mayor Ross hoped to engage with the leader of BSO in a more unified approach, instead of continuing the process where BSO meets with individual municipalities when it comes to reviewing and renewing contracts. However, just hours before the meeting was to take place, Mayor Ross received message from BSO that Sheriff Gregory Tony would no longer be attending.  During the meeting, Mayor Ross asked if any top official from BSO was in attendance either in person or online.  His question was met with no responses. 

Among the concerns raised by Mayor Ross and the City Commission are the rising costs, lack of transparency, and lack of control in decision-making associated with public safety.  The City Commission has repeatedly commended the "boots on the ground" that keep our community safe, but Mayor Ross says he is "stonewalled" when attempting to work with administration within the Broward Sheriff's Office.

During fiscal year 2021, Cooper City is paying the Broward Sheriff's Office a total of $24,290,833.  The payment is for both police and fire services.  Within Cooper City's current contract with the Broward Sheriff's Office, payment each year can be increased by up to five percent.  According to Mayor Ross and members of the City Commission, this potential increase each year is unsustainable.  It is one of the main factors in the City Commission's directive to City Manager Joseph Napoli to explore other options when it comes to providing for the community's public safety.