From City Journal:
New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly warned Wednesday that putting Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other suspects on trial for terrorism in New York would place an unbearable financial and security burden on a city whose policing resources were already badly stretched.
Commissioner Kelly did not openly urge President Obama to reconsider his Justice Department’s decision, saying such policy issues were Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s domain. But he saw no reason, he said, why such high-profile trials should not be held at a military base or another venue that would be less “disruptive” and pose less of a security challenge to New York. Kelly made his remarks at the annual breakfast meeting of the Police Foundation, which raises millions of dollars each year from individuals and New York-based companies to finance some of the NYPD’s more innovative counterterrorism and other programs.
Commissioner Kelly said that the Obama administration’s decision to try the five highest-profile accused terrorists in New York was not only “certain to raise the threat level” in a city that has always been al-Qaida’s top target, but would also break the department’s budget absent substantial federal assistance from Washington. “We simply cannot go forward” with the enhanced security measures his department has planned “without cash on the barrel head,” Kelly noted. Earlier this week, NYPD officials had discussed the amount of federal assistance the city would receive with President Obama’s Office of Management and Budget, but a figure has not been agreed upon.
City officials and New York Senator Charles Schumer have already urged the federal government to foot the entire security bill for the trials it recently decided to hold in New York’s criminal courts. But even if the city were reimbursed for every dollar it spent, Kelly claimed, further “erosion” in the police department’s ranks had to be expected. The department will have 34,500 officers by the middle of next year, or 6,000 fewer than it did the year before the 9/11 attacks, he said.