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Long term status of Milwaukee Police Chief Morales still in limbo, public comment period begins

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The Fire and Police Commission said Thursday night, they will take public comments on the job Chief Morales has done until Oct 20th.

FPC Chairman Steven DeVougas said they will take those opinions very seriously in their decision on whether or not to re-appoint Morales as chief.

“We actually do listen to what the community says. And they might offer perspectives that we might miss, or that we’re not aware of. Or that might be important to the community that we weren’t aware of as well.”

There was speculation that the FPC would give a more definitive answer on Morales's future Thursday. DeVougas said he is not leaning one way or the other.

“We need to just take an inventory, and look at what’s working, what’s not working, are we headed in the right direction. What changes need to be made.”

Chief Morales said he would sign a four year contract, and he’s ready to show the FPC and the public that he deserves that offer.

“They, you know, want to see what I've done in the last two years," Morales said. "And I plan on showing them. And they also want to see what I plan to do in the next, hopefully, four years.”

The FPC said they would not offer a contract of less than four years.

Devougas said he does think Morales has handled his tenure since February 2018 well, and mentioned Morales navigating an ACLU lawsuit and a change in the police pursuit policy.

“It’s just been a lot for him to take on, and I think he’s done it with aplomb. And, you know, that’s shown by the statistics, and the drop in crime.”

Anyone with feedback on the chief can submit it to the Fire and Police Commission portal online. They will also set up an in person event where citizens can ask Morales questions.

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