NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Former New York City Police Commissioner Bill Bratton left the door open to returning to his old job if he’s given an offer from Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio.
Appearing at NYU for a discussion on traffic safety, Bratton said the private sector has been good to him over the past several years.
“Life is pretty good, there’s no 3 o’clock in the morning phone calls,” said Bratton. “At the same time, there’s nothing like the public sector. Every day you get up and you can make a difference, in the case of New York, 8 million lives and have a life that is of great significance, a life that matters.”
But Bratton insists he’s not campaigning for his old job and said he hasn’t spoken with the de Blasio transition team.
“I haven’t been asked yet, I’m not applying for the job,” Bratton said. “If asked, I’ll certainly consider it.”
Bratton has advised the mayor-elect in the past on law enforcement issues.
“I would anticipate having some conversations with Mr. de Blasio’s transition team at some point in the near future,” he said.
A spokeswoman for the mayor-elect refused to confirm that Bratton is a candidate.
Even though de Blasio himself has mentioned Bratton, the spokeswoman said that “every name that’s out there is nothing more than speculation at this point,” CBS 3’s Marcia Kramer reported.
De Blasio campaigned on a promise of reforming stop-and-frisk, which the mayor-elect has labeled as divisive and racially motivated. He has said he will replace current police commissioner Ray Kelly.
Bratton said his during time as the chief of the LAPD, crime went down and polls showed relations with the community improved.
“Most of the attention on me here in New York is focused on my time in New York, but Los Angeles was actually a much more significant success story,” Bratton said. “So, it can be done; you can have law, order and respect for police at the same time.”
Bratton also touted his time at the Boston PD in the 1970s.
“I was a bit of a whiz kid in the Boston Police Department. A young sergeant working in the police commissioner’s office, the development of the first computer systems,” said Bratton. “To establish one of the first neighborhood policing program in that city and, indeed, one of the first community policing programs in the country.”
Bratton said he supports the City Council’s vote to install an inspector general to oversee the department.
“I worked with an inspector general, a very aggressive inspector general, who’s now the U.S. Attorney for Southern California,” said Bratton.
However, he said he doesn’t agree with federal Judge Shira Scheindlin’s appointment of a federal monitor to oversee the department, Kramer reported.
“I don’t know that you need a federal monitor. The problem with a federal monitor is they don’t go away,” said Bratton. “They’re very costly and you lose control in some respects.”
Scheindlin’s recommendations were put on hold and she was removed from the case by an appeals court last month.
Bratton served as police commissioner from 1994 to 1996 under then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
Other contenders for police commissioner are Chief of Department Philip Banks and First Deputy Commissioner Rafael Pineiro. Pineiro has been actively campaigning for the position.
Pineiro and Banks did not return calls seeking interviews, Kramer reported.
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