Cleveland authorities to tout convention preparedness

CLEVELAND (AP) — City officials plan to present an overview of security preparation for this summer’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland, seeking to counter continuing concerns about readiness to host the event expected to bring 50,000 visitors to northeast Ohio.

A press release from Mayor Frank Jackson’s office said Tuesday’s session will cover public safety, medical services, emergency management and more. The release stated that “despite rumors” to the contrary, Cleveland police are on track with preparedness goals and are continuing to sign agreements with outside agencies for assistance.

The release Friday evening came after the Greensboro, North Carolina, police department rescinded its offer to send 50 police officers to the convention, citing worries about insurance coverage and Cleveland’s preparations for the convention that begins July 18.

A Cleveland police union official has said repeatedly that officers aren’t being properly trained for unruly protest crowds. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s campaign has been targeted for protest and demonstrations.

Steve Loomis, president of the Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association, charged Friday that the city has been “absolutely irresponsible.”

The city’s release said no outside agencies have directly expressed preparedness concerns.

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