New York Daily News

Updated: Thursday, January 8, 2015, 1:12 AM

  

 

Bratton, NYPD union bosses fail to resolve differences with City Hall during meeting without Bill de Blasio

 

No resolution was produced during a two-hour meeting Wednesday with police Commissioner Bill Bratton and the leaders of the city’s five police unions. Patrick Lynch, head of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, blasted the mayor again. A high-ranking NYPD official told union heads that declining arrest numbers have to go up or else there would be repercussions. The mayor, meanwhile, was at a school event.

BY ROCCO PARASCANDOLA, TINA MOORE, JENNIFER FERMINO, CORKY SIEMASZKO

JEFF BACHNER/FOR NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Police Commissioner William Bratton was unable to end the NYPD's feud with City Hall.

A second attempt to repair the rift between City Hall and the NYPD ended Wednesday in failure and with a police union leader ripping Mayor de Blasio — again.

“The problem was not created here in headquarters, it started in City Hall,” Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch said in a statement after a two-hour sitdown with Police Commissioner Bill Bratton that de Blasio did not attend.

“We don’t believe there’s a willingness on the part of City Hall to solve these problems.”

Lynch also batted away reports that cops were engaging in a work slowdown to register their displeasure with de Blasio.

JEFFERSON SIEGEL/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
PBA head Pat Lynch leaves Police Headquarters after a meeting with other union leaders and Police Commissioner Bill Bratton on Wednesday night, January 7, 2015.

“Our members are doing their job,” he said in a statement endorsed by the other four police union leaders. “The other solutions will come from the leaders here. We wish there was a leader in City Hall.”

A source said a high-ranking NYPD official — not Bratton — at the meeting told union heads the tanking arrest numbers would have to go up. If not, there would be repercussions, the official said.

De Blasio was at a school event when Bratton went toe-to-toe with the leaders of the five police unions.

Asked why he wasn’t at the meeting, the mayor said he’s always willing to talk, but “the vast majority of those communications with those unions, of course, comes from the commissioner, his leadership team.

“If we think there’s an opportunity for a productive additional meeting, I’ll be ready to do it,” he said.

SUSAN WATTS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
The last time Mayor de Blasio met with the NYPD union bosses, it was a bust. This time Police Commissioner Bill Bratton (right) did it alone, and the result was the same.

Asked whether he regrets remarks that Lynch and others claim are anti-cop, de Blasio said he didn’t want to talk about regrets.

“I just don’t want to do that,” he said. “I think this is about moving forward. I’ve always tried to tell the truth as I know it, and I’ve tried to be respectful.”

De Blasio could not be reached for comment after the meeting, but his spokesman Phil Walzak had a statement ready.

“The mayor is committed to keeping crime at historically low levels, supporting the brave men and women of the NYPD who protect us everyday, and bringing the police and community closer together in every neighborhood across New York City,” it said.

“Mayor de Blasio has a strong record of supporting our cops — from adding more than $350 million in new investments to bolstering our police force to appointing the nation’s finest police leader as NYPD commissioner to clearly denouncing anti-cop rhetoric. That’s leadership,” Walzak added.

THE DAILY NEWS
The Daily News calls for an end to the dispute between City Hall and police.

Insiders said Bratton neither defended nor criticized the mayor during the meeting. All agreed officer safety and the public’s safety was of paramount concern.

“A lot of it was repetitive,” said one source with knowledge of the meeting. “We went over stuff that was said at the first meeting. The only difference was that the mayor wasn’t there and two more cops were shot.”

Before the get-together, Bratton tried to lower expectations for a breakthrough.

“The meeting is nothing unusual,” he said.

Not on the table for discussion were the acrimonious — and ongoing — contract negotiations between the city and the NYPD.

But in an apparent attempt to persuade the public that the PBA’s animosity toward de Blasio has nothing to do with money, the union has taken out full-page ads in the Daily News and other news outlets.

The ads feature a photograph of a hat belonging to a slain officer amid a makeshift memorial of flowers with the words: “This is what it’s all about.”

The PBA ad running in the Daily News.

“Self-serving politicians and cynical pundits think that New York City police officers are more worried about settling a contract than mourning our fallen brothers,” it reads. “Real New Yorkers know better.”

It is a clear reference to the Dec. 20 murders of Brooklyn Police Officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu by a cop-hating maniac — a tragedy that Lynch laid at de Blasio’s door, saying he had “blood on the hands.”

Bratton has defended his boss and joined de Blasio on Monday in dressing down union leaders and the rank-and-file for turning their backs on the mayor during the funerals of the two hero cops.

Early on, Sergeants Benevolent Association President Ed Mullins signaled that Wednesday’s meeting would not be any more successful than their first sitdown last week, which included de Blasio.

De Blasio angered the city’s Finest by, among other things, expressing sympathy for protesters demonstrating against a Staten Island grand jury’s decision not to indict the cop who killed Eric Garner with a chokehold.

After Ramos and Liu were killed, many cops began turning their backs on the mayor.

With 

rparascandola@nydailynews.com