The Bloomington City Council is holding a Town Hall Forum tonight to address repeated outcry over the city’s decision to purchase an armored car for the Bloomington Police Department.
Bloomington Chapter Black Lives Matter protesters and advocates are expected to voice their opposition to the nearly quarter million dollar purchase during public comment at this evening’s town hall.
City of Bloomington Communications Director Mary-Catherine Carmichael says Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton and BPD Chief Mike Diekhoff are expected to make quick addresses to the assembly during tonight’s town hall in City Hall’s Council Chambers.
In a Facebook Event called, “#BlackLivesMatter Storms the Hall,” 56 people stated they will go to the town hall, and more than two hundred fifty said they were interested in going.
In one of the last lines of the event, an advocate wrote, “If officials refuse to engage with us in meaningful discussions WE WILL SHUT IT DOWN!!!”
The event is organized by Vauhxx Booker, who forced an end to Mayor Hamilton’s State of the City address last week. Booker cites Black Lives Matter’s concerns over police militarization and a lack of public engagement over the purchase of the armored vehicle.
Carmichael says the city is reviewing the processes by which the armored car was purchased and why little public input was consulted.
Tonight’s Town Hall is at 6:30 PM, at City Council Chambers in Bloomington City Hall. Members of City Council are hosting the event. Live coverage is available, via CATS: Community Access Television Services.