Today’s buzz looks at policing (you probably want more cops on the beat), the changing of the guard at Virginia’s largest library system and workforce diversity coming to a head in Tuscaloosa along with the best possible piece of outerwear for early autumn: the hoodie.
Right Now with Matt Yager
What I’m watching: The new Fences Trailer
What I’m reading: Why You Should Marry The Marching Band Kid
What I’m doing: Back stretches. Lots of back stretches.
What I want to know from you:
More Cops On The Street Leads To Less Crime—And Fewer Arrests—In The U.K.: Police departments around the world are often asking for money to hire more officers. A new study shows they are worth it. Putting more cops on the streets more than pays for itself, say researchers from the University of Cambridge. The year-long experiment was conducted in Peterborough in the U.K. and explored “soft policing” in 71 known crime hotspots. Uniformed civilian police staff were sent into the field “with few arrest powers and no weapons.” If that last part sounds crazy, remember that British police don’t carry guns on regular duty. These Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) wore GPS trackers and their time on the street was tracked. Regular police constables were also used, as a control group and for comparison, although the researchers weren’t allowed access to their GPS data.
A kinder, gentler philosophy of success: Alain de Botton examines our ideas of success and failure — and questions the assumptions underlying these two judgments. Is success always earned? Is failure? He makes an eloquent, witty case to move beyond snobbery to find true pleasure in our work.
MIT Has a Clever Way to Map Streetlights: Cities have gradually started replacing high-pressure lightbulbs with the more energy-efficient and lower-maintenance LED alternatives, but as a team of MIT researchers argue, it’s not only the bulbs that are outdated. “Oddly, the science of streetlight placement is relatively primitive today, and the means to monitor how much light reaches the street are very limited,” Sumeet Kumar, a graduate of MIT, and his colleagues wrote in a recent paper published in the IEEE Sensors Journal.
Trending on ELGL
- October ’16 Local Government Confidential: A Busy Saturday for God
- My Life in Presidential Terms with Nicole Fredericks, City of Gresham, OR
- Conference & Networking: MMANC Annual Conference – October 10 to 12
- Webinar: Local Governments & Local and Regional Food Economies – October 11
- Event & Networking: Pre-#ELGL16 DEN #13Percent Panel + Happy Hour – October 20
- Conference & Networking: #ELGL16 PopUp Conference – October 21
Unsafe Buildings Put Everett Public Works Employees At Risk: Everett Public Works employees are the people who have to shut off the water and fix the main when it breaks. They have to maintain the streets and bridges that most of us take for granted. Basically when something the City of Everett owns breaks…these folks fix it. That’s why there’s a new urgency for a very expensive replacement project at the headquarters, shops, buildings and work areas for the Everett Public Works Department itself. Some of the public works buildings are subject to failure in an earthquake. In addition to the obvious physical danger to employees, it also means crews wouldn’t be able to get to needed equipment or materials in the event of a major disaster. That can domino into all kinds of issues for emergency responders and regular Everett residents.
Fire Department to distribute lock boxes: Residents who are at risk of a medical emergency no longer need to worry about having medics breaking their doors to reach them. With the help of a grant, Waterloo Fire Rescue received 134 Knox lock boxes to allow emergency crews entrance. The fire department will distribute the boxes to residents who live alone and have mobility issues. “We have a need. A couple of times a month, we get a call for an old lady down with a broken hip or dislocated hip,” said Capt. Bill Harter, with the fire department.
City Hall has to set top priorities to justify $800 million in higher taxes: While most people have their eyes focused on November elections, plenty of Kansas City’s elected, civic and neighborhood leaders also are making plans for a crucial decision next April. That’s when City Hall expects to ask voters to approve a property tax increase that would help pay to issue $800 million in bonds over the next 20 years. There’s some urgency to the matter because the City Council has to decide by January whether to move forward with this huge undertaking. The city’s siren song now: This money would pay for “basic services,” possibly falling into six categories outlined in an interview last week by City Manager Troy Schulte. They are better roads, bridges, parks, public buildings, flood control and sidewalks.
Winnsboro police chief among 10 arrested in Columbia prostitution sting: The Winnsboro police chief was among 10 men arrested in an undercover prostitution sting in Columbia on Friday. The Columbia Police Department arrested the men in a raid at a hotel in the Greystone Boulevard area. The department would not name the hotel. Winnsboro Department of Public Safety Chief Freddy Lorick Sr. was among those arrested, Columbia police said. During the arrest, Lorick told officers he needed medical treatment, and he was taken to a local hospital. He was still in the hospital on Saturday afternoon, police said.
Tuscaloosa City Council debates workforce diversity: What began as a specially-called meeting to discuss employee positions under the Tuscaloosa mayor’s restructuring plan quickly became a chastisement on the lack of diversity within City Hall. “I want y’all to look around this room for a minute,” said Council President Harrison Taylor less than an hour into Friday’s meeting of the City Council’s administration committee. “Everything is white except for three elected officials and an intern. “What has happened? This is shameful, ladies and gentlemen.” Taylor, currently serving his sixth term on the City Council, clarified that he wasn’t blaming any person or practice, but stressed that he was displeased by the lack of black people employed in leadership positions.