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Adams planning to consolidate training for all NYC enforcement personnel at NYPD academy


Mayor Adams’ administration is planning to restructure the Police Academy to consolidate training for several agencies outside the NYPD’s purview, including the correction, sanitation, probation and parks departments, sources with knowledge of the situation told the Daily News.

The newly envisioned police academy with its expanded mission will remain in its College Point, Queens location, but will get a name change, according to the sources, who said monikers floated include the Public Safety Academy and the Public Safety Training Academy.

The effort is being driven by Deputy Mayor Phil Banks, two administration officials directly familiar with the matter told The News. The expansion marks a significant shift, as currently all agencies have their own small academies where their enforcement personnel are trained.

Banks, who served as the NYPD’s chief of department, has been working on the academy expansion project for two years, according to one source, who said the deputy mayor views it as a way to put forth a “national model” for other cities.

That official noted that part of Banks’ motivation is rooted in his “concerns about performance and quality” in certain agencies, such as the parks and sanitation departments. It was unclear if the training would just be physically located at the academy or if there would be a shift in how the training programs are managed.

Some of Banks’ concerns have been addressed by the Sanitation Department through its efforts to use cameras to track illegal dumping. Other concerns over questions of jurisdiction between the Parks Department police and the NYPD continue to linger, the source said.

MANHATTAN - NY - 04/03/2023 - New York City Mayor Eric Adams speaks from the podium during press conference at City Hall flanked by NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell and Phillip Banks, Deputy Mayor of New York City for Public Safety regarding the City security preparations for possible disruption by Trump supporters during his arraignment tomorrow at Manhattan Criminal Court and where his hush-money case will be tried. (Luiz C. Ribeiro for NY Daily News)
New York City Mayor Eric Adams, left, speaks during a press conference at City Hall next to Deputy Mayor Phil Banks in 2023. (Luiz C. Ribeiro for New York Daily News)

An official announcement touting the rebranding and restructuring of the academy is anticipated as early as this month, two of the source noted. City Hall and the NYPD did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

According to one of the sources, Banks’ office on May 3 held a briefing with high-level staff from all city agencies with enforcement arms to inform them the administration will centralize training for all of them at the NYPD’s College Point building.

The agencies included in the planned overhaul include the Departments of Correction, Sanitation, Probation, Parks, Health and Mental Hygiene, Homeless Services as well as the Sheriff’s Office, Health + Hospitals and the Taxi and Limousine Commission, according to the sources.

All of those agencies were on the May 3 briefing, the digital invite for which was billed “Public Safety Academy,” one official noted.

“It’s professionalizing the idea of how to do enforcement training,” the official said.

Concerns and unanswered questions remain, though.

“He’s trying to break down the silos, and that’s a good thing,” another administration official said, but added that “The devil’s going to be in the details.”

It’s also not entirely clear when the new training structure will be implemented or how much it will cost, given that it will likely require an expansion of facilities at the Police Academy.

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