Chicago mayor announces deal to create an elected board to oversee the Chicago Police

Lori Lightfoot
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot in June 2021. Scott Olson/Getty Images
  • Lori Lightfoot announced she and a community action group have come to a deal on police oversight.
  • A plan to create a civilian oversight board of the department has been in the works for years.
  • It was delayed as Lightfoot and the activist group had differing views on who should hold the power.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Monday announced that a tentative deal had been reached to create an elected board to oversee the Chicago Police Department.

“After a weekend of productive negotiations, we are pleased to announce that the parties have reached an agreement on a proposed substitute ordinance for civilian oversight of the Chicago Police Department, the Civilian Office of Police Accountability, and the Police Board,” Lightfoot, a Democrat, said in a statement Monday.

“If passed, this ordinance would bring an historic, transformative, and balanced approach to civilian oversight,” the statement continued. “The Committee on Public Safety is expected to take up the substitute ordinance on Tuesday and we strongly urge the members of City Council to vote to approve this landmark legislation.”

A deal between community action groups and city officials to establish some form of civilian oversight of the department has been in the works for years.

Lightfoot initially promised to present a civilian oversight plan for the department within 100 days of taking office in 2019, but then pushed back the deadline.

The mayor and the Grassroots Alliance for Police Accountability – a coalition of activists behind the formation of civilian oversight – presented two different plans that diverged when it came to how much power the board would have over department policy and firings.

Under the mayor’s plan, the board would be able to vote on a resolution of no-confidence, but wouldn’t have the authority to remove the superintendent.

Lightfoot also wanted the power to veto policy decisions adopted by the oversight board, the Chicago Tribune reported in May, noting that the request was a “possible sticking point” in the deal.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.