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Milwaukee police union sues to make city enforce new residency law

MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - The Milwaukee police union has asked a judge to stop letting the city ignore a new state law that weakens local residency ordinances.

Milwaukee continues to enforce its long-standing requirement that all city employees live in the city. That’s despite a measure in the new state budget which throws out residency requirements, except to make police and fire personnel live up to 15 miles away.

The lawsuit says Milwaukee has a, “perverse belief” that the new state law puts an unconstitutional restraint on the city’s home rule powers.

Union attorney Jonathan Cermele said the city cannot argue that it will suffer injuries by following state law.

Union president Michael Crivello and three other officers are listed as plaintiffs. All four said they want to move out of the city, and an unknown number of other officers want to do the same.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said he’s not surprised by the action. He said the city’s position is that the issue will be decided by the courts.