Mary Norwood’s 12 point Plan on Crime
Councilwoman and Mayoral candidate Mary Norwood has released her 12 point plan to tackle crime in Atlanta.
Here’s what it is:
Fix today’s crisis!
- End the furloughs of our police and firefighters. Keep precincts and fire stations open and staffed 24/7.
- Pay police and firefighters’ salaries from thetaxes Atlanta already collects. Find savings in other departments.
- To fund our public safety departments we need tofix the accounting mess at City Hall. We need twenty-first century accounting methods, and the public deserves transparency. Balance the books. Reconcile all the checking accounts. Audit all the funds. Only when we know how much money we really have and how much money we really owe can we rest secure in the knowledge that no one will ever furlough police and firefighters again.
Boost the police force!
- The current goal of 2,000 officers recruited by the end of 2009 will not guarantee public safety. We need to expand the force by at least an additional 10%.
Retain our experienced public safety personnel!
- End the loss of experienced police officers and firefighters who leave Atlanta for jobs elsewhere. Restore the “incentive to stay” annual increments, rewarding experienced police officers and firefighters who stay on our force, keeping senior officers on the team. End the freeze of the “step program.” End the practice of paying experienced officers less than we pay the officers they train who come here from other jurisdictions.
- Initiate a Deferred Retirement Option Program (”DROP”) so that experienced officers nearing retirement age stay on the job to develop the potential of new recruits.
- Make Atlanta’s public safety salary and benefits levels competitive with all other governments in the metropolitan area. Provide adequate resources for training our police and firefighters and for their safety while on the job.
Bring public safety to the grass-roots!
- Help our public safety personnel become homeowners within the city. Put vacant or foreclosed housing to work. Aid officers who commit to Atlanta to buy in Atlanta. Working with banks to get police and firefighters into homes is good for business, good for morale, and good for public safety. It’s a win-win-win.
- Put more police on the beat and away from desk duty, airport duty, entourage duty, and anything else that does not contribute directly to safety on the street. Forge new bonds uniting City Hall, our police, and the public schools. Make our police part of the fabric of life in our city.
- Work with Fulton and DeKalb Counties to ensure more vigorous prosecutions. Keep repeat offenders in jail until bond is set. Combat property crimes, with no quick ticket back to the street.
- Adopt comprehensive community-based models; work with youth programs, truancy prevention, neighborhood and community associations; make use of up-to-datetechnology to enable our officers to communicate easily and effectively with our citizens.
- Put the “broken windows” theory of crime control to work. Give Code Enforcement the resources needed to make sure that dilapidated properties are maintained, trash collected, and neighborhoods protected from blight. Code Enforcement supports public safety. Hold property owners accountable: our safety is too precious to let them trash our community. Involve active citizens in keeping their streetscape sightly. A clean, well-maintained and active neighborhood is a safer neighborhood. We must see community as a whole.