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The Seattle Police Department did not meet its goal to respond quickly enough to 911 calls over the last seven months of 2020, and the agency's top brass are using the issue to stave off a proposed $5.4 million budget cut under current consideration by Seattle City Council members.

During a meeting Tuesday of the council’s Public Safety and Human Services Committee, acting Police Chief Adrian Diaz and members of his staff laid out reasons why the committee should not recommend a cut to its budget as some members had promised to do in 2021, KOMO reports.

The committee discussed but took no action on the presentation. There were no adversarial comments made by council members that were directed to the department.

The police department has set seven minutes as the average response time for a 911 Priority 1 call, which could be a possibly life-threatening situation.