Brooklyn Center officials are looking at reallocating $1.2 million from the police budget and using it to fund police reform measures.

Much of the money could come from not filling 14 vacant positions in the Police Department, according to a presentation Monday by Acting City Manager Reggie Edwards.

If passed, the funding will put significant money behind the Daunte Wright and Kobe Dimock-Heisler Community Safety and Violence Prevention Act, passed earlier this year and named after two Black men who died during encounters with Brooklyn Center police. The proposal to budget $1.2 million to cover the reforms will come before the council again on Nov. 29.

The reforms will remake the city's police force with more independent oversight, prohibit arrests for low-level offenses and use unarmed civilians to handle minor traffic violations, proponents say. It will also create a new department to oversee public safety.

Savings from the 14 vacancies would amount to more than $1.3 million, and the council could choose to put that money toward funding the changes, according to Edwards. About $500,000 would be covered by grants and $150,000 from the city's budget for the $1.87 million plan in 2022, under the proposal.

It is unclear if the unfilled positions in the Police Department would be permanently cut or if the city is looking at other funding options. Edwards did not respond to requests for comment on Tuesday.

City Council members adjourned the work session and did not comment on the resolution after the city manger's presentation.

The presentation came exactly a week before jury selection begins in the manslaughter trial of former officer Kim Potter. She shot Wright during a traffic stop last April, and the killing sparked weeks of protests outside the Police Department.

Opponents of the plan said expenses shouldn't come from the department's $9 million budget.

"They need to keep their funding and get their staffing numbers back up," said Jim Mortenson, executive director of Law Enforcement Labor Services, the union that represents police officers from Brooklyn Center and hundreds of other agencies across the state.

Mortenson said the department is down a substantial number of officers. Though budgeted for 49 sworn officers, he said 35 were on the payroll and three were out on long-term medical leave as of October.

Officers in Brooklyn Center are being offered a $3,000 retention bonus this year and in 2022. Mortenson said that speaks volumes for the problems happening within the department and that the force shouldn't be "defunded."

Michelle Gross, founder of the nonprofit group Communities United Against Police Brutality, said at the meeting Monday that the plan was a step in the right direction.

"Let's not make the mistake this is police reform — it's not," Gross said. "It's about looking at the proper way to respond to various kinds of calls that come in that right now unfortunately are weighing down the Police Department and hindering their ability to do the real work that they actually do."

The Daunte Wright and Kobe Dimock-Heisler Community Safety and Violence Prevention Act will create a community safety and violence prevention office, which would oversee the city's police, fire and two new city departments: traffic enforcement and community response.

It also resolves to create a committee, which would include residents who have been detained by Brooklyn Center police, to review and make recommendations on such matters as police response to protests and the collective-bargaining agreement between the city and police.

The resolution will direct the city manager to implement a policy requiring officers to issue citations by mail, rather than arrests, for nonmoving traffic infractions and nonfelony offenses and warrants, unless required by law.