In its lead editorial today, "No Public Interest In Police Details," the Boston Herald cited a recent poll by the Political Research Center and the Beacon Hill Institute, both part of Suffolk University. The poll found that a full 86% of registered voters would prefer civilian flaggers to police details at public work sites.
In 2004, Police Details: Protection or Perk, the institute completed a study which concluded that the local police detail system is costly and doesn't improve public safety.
Unfortunately for the '09 fiscal year budget, Patrick is unwilling to stand up to the police unions, and opting instead to “coordinate with all of the interest groups.” Read this as a move to put off the issue that the Governor and the police unions hope the public forgets. But the governor ought to read the poll results a lot more closely. The show of support for reform by is coming from registered voters, voters who put Patrick in office, which ought to force his hand.