As chair of the Police-Fire Committee the past three terms, I have shown strong support for our excellent public safety services in the Village:
Funding: The police levy initiated in 2012 and renewed (at a lower millage) in 2017 provides essential revenue to fund police services. At present, the police levy is required to maintain the police services that residents value so highly. For both levy campaigns, I helped lead successful citizen efforts for passage.
Equipment: Council and staff carefully manage resources to prioritize purchases strategically. Investments in recent years include: In-car computers, radios, license plate readers, vehicles, weapons, remodeled dispatch area, new squad room, fire gear.
Innovation: We are fortunate beyond measure to have Chief Wallace leading our police and fire services. He is always innovating and networking, to the benefit of our community. Recent examples include: Establishing the auxiliary officer program and the canine unit, creating the Amberley Village Alarm (AVA) monitoring program, hosting the Heroin Task Force commander position, implementing dive boat purchase on behalf of the Hamilton County Police Association Underwater Search and Recovery Unit using their grant funds.
Communication: I initiated regular meetings where previously they had been infrequent. We meet about quarterly for a department update, or more often if there are specific matters requiring Council action.This process has given Council members greater insight into police and fire operations, which aids our decision making. A great example of this dynamic occurred in regards to moving our 911 service to Hamilton County. Though the Village had always valued having 911 calls answered here, circumstances had changed considerably with cell phones, resulting in most calls for service coming from outside the Village. Additionally, technology changes and new state standards would have required significant financial investment for not much benefit. Chief Wallace and Lt. Blum had been communicating this ongoing situation to us for at least a year before a decision was required. By the time we arrived at that point, the Committee understood why the change made sense, and in fact was beneficial to free up dispatch staff to work directly with Amberley officers on patrol. [Note: Amberley maintains dispatch staffing round the clock every single day and has a dedicated phone line to receive 911 transfers from the county.]
Paid for by Conway for Council