Retiring Salt Lake Police Chief E.L. "Bud" Willoughby - honored Thursday for his service to the community - went down fighting for the police department that has "Bud" written all over it.
In a short speech at a luncheon in his honor, Willoughny pleaded for funds to be restored to the departemnt so it doesn't have to lose valuable programs, such as crime prevention and analysis, units that Willoughtny helped create and support.
The department, along with every city service, has fallen victim to a 3 percent budget cut by Mayor Palmer DePaulis.
"The police department has been hit very hard," said Willoughby, who has been on sick leave since January and officially retires May 31. "I hope the city fathers will see fit to restore money back to the police department."
Willoughby noted that 11 years ago, reports and audits indicated the department was not functioning effectively. A recent audit, howerver, praised the departement as one of the most innovative in the country.
He pleaded that those innovations not be destroyed.
"I came here 11 years ago and I'm leaving now," Willoughby said. "I hope and pray I left it a little bit better than I found it."
During the luncheon, which was sponsonred at the Tric-Arc Hotel by the Chamber of Commerce, the Honorary Colonels of the Salt Lake Police Department and the International Foot Print Association, a U.S. Justice Department official presented Willoughby with the justice department's "Award For Public Service."
Wilbur Reed, a justice department official from Denver, said in presenting the award, "If (Willoughby) said he was going to do something, I found that it would be done." Reed noted that Willoughby has had great skill in curbing racial tensions in the city.
Willoughby told the luncheon guests that he plans to live in Pacific City, Ore., but will also spend months with his children in Salt Lake City and Tucson, Arz.