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Screenshot: Axios Events

Cutting the police budget isn't the answer in Houston, rather, a greater investment must be made in underserved communities, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said on Friday during an Axios virtual event.

What he's saying: "Houston has underfunded our police for years," Turner said. He recently signed an executive order that included a ban on police use of chokeholds or strangleholds. However, he stressed, "that's the first step. I don't want anyone to assume the executive order we put in place, which was significant, is the end of the line."

  • "What I believe people are asking for is good policing. They are asking for a police system that is accountable. They're also going beyond that."
  • "They want us to be investing in communities and neighborhoods that've been overlooked and underinvested in for decades."
  • Turner also said they are preparing to implement additional reforms that will be citizen-driven.

Go deeper

Austin to cut $150 million from police budget

Photo: Sergio Flores/Getty Images

The Austin City Council unanimously moved to cut its police department budget by $150 million on Thursday, The Texas Tribune reports.

Why it matters: Austin is the first of Texas's four largest cities to slash its police funding, per the Tribune. The cut is also one of the biggest percentage decreases in the U.S. this year.

39 mins ago - World

U.S. strikes Iran-backed militia structures in Syria

President Biden at the Pentagon on Feb. 10. Photo: Alex Brandon - Pool/Getty Images

The United States on Thursday carried out an airstrike against facilities in Syria linked to an Iran-backed militia group, the Pentagon announced.

The state of play: The strike, approved by President Biden, comes "in response to recent attacks against American and Coalition personnel in Iraq, and to ongoing threats to those personnel," Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said in a statement.

Senate parliamentarian rules $15 minimum wage cannot be included in relief package

Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images

The Senate parliamentarian ruled Thursday that the provision to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour cannot be included in the broader $1.9 trillion COVID relief package.

Why it matters: It's now very likely that any increase in the minimum wage will need bipartisan support, as the provision cannot be passed with the simple Senate majority that Democrats are aiming to use for President Biden's rescue bill.