A safe community has many components. These are places where people want to be; where they know their neighbors; where there s a connection to the community; and where they are safe. We are pro-active in helping create an atmosphere where neighbors can meet neighbors, important in our efforts to be a premiere place to live.
Our focus will continue to be one of the safest cities in Idaho. With safety as our first priority, it is important to know that Meridian continues to be one of the safest cities in Idaho. In 2012 our Police response times improved in every category.
Meridian is taking an aggressive position regarding the illegal use of drugs and alcohol which can destroy communities; one person, one family, one neighborhood at a time. Prevention programs such as the Mayor s Anti Drug Coalition (MADC) are an important part of being a safe community. This award Coalition, is working with neighbors, places of worship, and businesses to form a strong partnership to prevent substance abuse. MADC is in the final year of a $625,000 Drug-free Community Grant and eligible for a five year extension. We will be aggressive in our efforts to achieve that renewal and are working with partners like PAL, the School District, and our business community we will continue to 'fight for our families' working with our Coalition.
Our strategic 'rooting of crime' through our Impact Team, bicycle patrols, and working with citizens will continue. In addition, we will use Data-Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety, our crime analysis tool, to identify crime areas to address the cause not just react to the symptoms. These efforts continue to assure we are the safest-city-of-our-size in Idaho!
While our Fire Department response times increased upwards at the same rate as our call volume increased. When you consider our increased service areas, road construction, and additional vehicle traffic their response is still impresive, but we will work in 2013 to see improvements as new road projects like the Meridian Split Corridor Phase II provide improved access for our emergency responders.
Promoting events like National Night Out and Neighborhood Watch are an important part of our fire and police prevention programs. Combined with our newly formed citizen park patrol in Kleiner Park and public safety citizen academy, there are opportunities for neighbors to meet neighbors and citizens to meet citizens, people are brought together in Meridian. Through these events citizens gather and learn; discuss concerns and seek solutions; or band together to watch out for their neighbor and keep their streets safe.