SBI Crime Stats Show Sanford Working In The Right Direction

The SBI has just released the 2008 crime statistics for our area.

Although one crime is one too many, and if you are the victum of a crime you don’t much care what statistics show…….these statistics clearly prove that the City of Sanford continues to be working in the right direction in making our city a safer place to live. 

City of Sanford                              Down 18.8% from 2007

Offense

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

Murder

7

1

1

6

4

2

6

2

3

6

Rape

12

4

10

10

14

10

9

9

5

5

Robbery

61

50

65

87

91

67

62

64

59

54

Aggravated Assault

99

71

80

107

87

101

70

48

48

57

Violent Crime

179

126

156

210

196

180

147

123

115

122

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Burglary

547

283

521

573

532

538

397

373

429

298

Larceny

1,682

996

1,788

1,765

1,651

1,284

1,251

1,153

930

767

MV Theft

110

90

88

112

93

127

111

79

93

85

Property Crime

2,339

1,369

2,397

2,450

2,276

1,949

1,759

1,605

1,452

1,150

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Index Crime Total

2,518

1,495

2,553

2,660

2,472

2,129

1,906

1,728

1,567

1,272

Lee County Sheriff (does not include City of Sanford)

Offense

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

Murder

 

1

2

2

2

1

 

1

3

3

Rape

4

9

5

5

9

3

5

7

7

3

Robbery

11

7

3

2

10

8

6

8

7

9

Aggravated Assault

33

11

28

2

8

14

6

12

24

26

Violent Crime

48

28

38

11

29

26

17

28

41

41

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Burglary

296

337

370

409

302

241

198

282

270

283

Larceny

301

284

339

333

273

205

190

265

275

361

MV Theft

60

42

28

70

59

49

59

97

60

81

Property Crime

657

663

737

812

634

495

447

644

605

725

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Index Crime Total

705

691

775

823

663

521

464

672

646

766

Lee County as a whole

  Offense Category

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

 

Murder

7

2

3

8

6

3

6

3

6

9

 

Rape

16

13

15

15

23

13

14

16

12

8

 

Robbery

72

57

68

89

101

75

68

72

66

64

 

Agg.  Assault

132

82

108

109

95

115

76

60

72

85

 

Burglary

844

620

891

982

834

779

595

655

699

581

 

Larceny

1,990

1,280

2,127

2,098

1,924

1,489

1,441

1,418

1,205

1,144

 

MV Theft

171

132

116

182

152

176

170

176

153

166

 

 

3,232

2,186

3,328

3,483

3,135

2,650

2,370

2,400

2,213

2,057

SANFORD ONE OF THE NATION’S PLAYFUL CITIES USA

 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
SANFORD NAMED ONE OF THE NATION’S
‘PLAYFUL CITY USA’ COMMUNITIES
 
SANFORD – Sanford received another distinction earlier this month, when the city was named one of the nation’s 93 “Playful City USA” communities by KaBOOM!, a nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing play opportunities for children.
In their announcement, KaBOOM! commended Sanford for providing “quantity, quality and access” to playspaces and recreational programs designed to improve childhood wellness, public safety and the overall quality of life – especially in a down economy.
The nonprofit based in Washington noted the city’s network of “pocket parks,” which provide play areas throughout city neighborhoods, as well as recreational initiatives at low-income housing sites and a neighborhood park plan being developed for East Sanford that will contribute more broadly to community development.
Sanford is no stranger to accolades. The Research Triangle Region community is regularly ranked among the top 50 small cities across the United States in economic strength by POLICOM, an independent research firm, having landed in the 40th spot this year. It also has appeared recently in Site Selection magazine’s list of America’s top small towns for business.
But the “Playful City USA” designation shows that quality of life in Sanford matters as much as raw economic progress.
“Sanford is a great place to work and own a business, but truly great communities reach beyond economic development alone,” said Sanford city manager Hal Hegwer. “We recognize how important these amenities are for the quality of life, and everyone in this community is making a real effort to bring accessible parks and playspaces to all residents, no matter where in our area they may live.”
Darell Hammond, cofounder and CEO of KaBoom!, believes the annual “Playful City USA” listings are important because children everywhere are hurt when communities don’t provide easily-accessible places to play safely.
“Sanford took a stand,” he said, “and determined that the future of their community – their children – deserve a commitment to the cause of play.”
The Lee County Economic Development Corp. is a nonprofit organization established to attract industry, enhance job opportunities and promote sound planning across Lee County. Funding is provided by the county, as well as the City of Sanford and Town of Broadway, the county’s two municipalities.
 
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Media Contacts
  Bob Heuts, Director
  Jane Haber, Administrative Assistant
  +1.919.774.8439   (phone)
  +1.919.775.5410   (fax)
  info@lcedc.com (e-mail)
More on the Web

Sanford awarded “Playful City U.S.A.” Status

 

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The following is an earlier post followed by an article written by Gordon Anderson of the Sanford Herald.  I posted both of these items representing the beginning of the “Playful City” idea and the presentation of the award.

One of the many interesting workshops at the Congress of Cities meeting in Orlando was “Building a Playful City.” This also seemed to be one of the most attended workshops.

A panel of five discussed the many challenges children face today that end up keeping them off the playground and out of the park.  Time spent on computers, video games, and television were high on the list of reasons not to play and exercise.  This was followed by the “I’m bored” with nothing to do story.  Finally, some of our youth are just plain lazy.

We were told that forty-seven percent of children in America are over weight.  It was also estimated that fifty-two percent of elementary schools across the country have tatally eliminated recess. 

One member of the panel told a story about the school his child attended.  The school was changing the menu in the cafeteria and planned on only offering healthier items. This would eliminate Sloppy Joe’s, etc. as a lunch item.  A public hearing was held on the issue and an over two hundred parents attended to voice their displeasure with this new plan

Several weeks later a public hearing was also held concerning the elimination of recess at the school.  At this public hearing, only two parents came to voice their opposition to this idea.  Seems that these childrens parents priorities are a little mixed up on what should really be important, I believe.

KaBOOM ( www.kaboom.org) is an organization that helps cities become “Playful Cities.”  Their goal is to have a safe place for children to play within walking distance from their home.  There are five requirements for cities that wish to be designated a “Playful City.” These commitments are:

  1. Create a local play commission task force
  2. Design an annual action plan for play
  3. Conduct a play-space audit of all publicly accessible play areas
  4. Identify current spending on capital projects and maintenance of play-spaces
  5. Proclaim and celebrate an annual “Play Day.”

By becoming a “Playful City USA,” your city can receive grants, technical support, on-line resources, media support, playground builds, and more.  Most of all you will be letting your community that your are committed in making your city a place where children can have access to safe, clean play facilities.

There are only 67 “Playful Cities” out of the over five thousand cities in the United States. I believe Sanford should become a “Playful City USA.” We’re on the right track now with the new pocket park program.  This will take more effort, time and funding. I believe this type investment in our community and our children is long over due.

(end of first post)

City gets recognition for bringing back “play’

By GORDON ANDERSON
anderson@sanfordherald.com
Jul 16,2009

SANFORD — Sanford has been named by a national non-profit dedicated to bringing play back into the lives of children as one of 93 cities in the country that take innovative steps to making play a priority for the health and well-being of young people.

National non-profit agency KaBOOM! has named Sanford as one of its Playful City USA communities, citing the work of its “Play Task Force,” its development of “pocket parks” throughout the city and plans for parks in east Sanford.

“Sanford took a stand and determined that the future of their community — their children — deserve a commitment to the cause of play. This is an investment in the future, not an expenditure, and cities and towns across the country can replicate initiatives from these Playful City USA communities so that they too can bring play back into the lives of their children,” said Darell Hammond, KaBOOM! CEO.

Sanford Mayor Cornelia Olive said the city council is “delighted” to have the designation.

“We’re at an early stage of developing our parks and open space strategies so we are very pleased to receive this recognition of our efforts,” she said. “We continue to partner with Lee County for recreation programs but we’ve recognized the need for a city of 30,000 to be actively engaged in creating play opportunities for our children.”

Of the 93 communities named, five were in North Carolina. Other than Sanford, they are Durham, Greensboro, Greenville, and Creedmoor.

anderson@sanfordherald.com

New Sanford Police Department TIP411 Text Crime Reporting

 

text-phone

This is an article from The Sanford Herald dated March 19th, 2009  by Gordon Anderson.

SPD takes techno-step with text-tip system

You’ve read a lot lately about how businesses are taking advantage of social networking sights and how elected officials are using status sites like Twitter to keep their “followers” informed.

So it only makes sense that we should expect law enforcement to use the technology out their to their advantage. That’s why we commend the Sanford Police Department for announcing to the Sanford City Council this week that it is launching a program that will allow citizens to send anonymous text messages about crimes or tips in their communities.

Sanford Police will begin participating in the tip411 program, which will allow police to respond to texts and create a “chat” with the tipster without revealing that person’s identity. It’s a program being used by similarly sized police departments in Massachusetts, Indiana and Tennessee.

No price for the system was given at Monday’s meeting, but one published report lists Tennessee’s system costing $1,500 to begin.

Text messaging is nothing new, of course, but long gone are the days when picking up the phone was the only way to contact somebody when face-to-face wasn’t an option. We’re becoming a society that uses “tweets” and “status updates” as the primary way to communicate with our friends, but that lack of contact — that anonymity — is actually an important tool when it comes to having the public provide information on crimes.

Often, those with information are intimidated to make that phone call or show up at the police station. This provides another means of communication with our law enforcement officials, and since just about all of us own cell phones with texting capabilities, Sanford PD just became much more accessible.

It’s a nice step, and we’re glad to see it happening. However, we also think much more can be done.

Currently, neither the Sanford Police Department nor the Lee County Sheriff’s Office oversee a functionable Web site. Sanford PD’s site merely consists of contact information and its Code of Ethics,” while the sheriff’s site wasn’t even accessible Wednesday — nor were any other parts of Lee County Government’s Web site. Sheriff Tracy Carter does publish a regularly updated blog, but we feel everybody would benefit from a more comprehensive departmental Web site … that includes both agencies.

We hope to learn more about SPD’s text system in the coming days. 

  End of Article.

Police: Text tip line will get more involved

By GORDON ANDERSON     anderson@sanfordherald.com     March 21,2009

SANFORD — Sanford police have a new weapon in their fight against crime — the cell phone text message.

Through technology provided by a company called Citizen Observer, a program is in place at the department which allows citizens to send anonymous tips through text messages. Doing so opens a “chat” between the cell phone user and an officer at the police department.

Maj. Kevin Gray said the program is aimed at getting people to provide police with tips about crime while embracing new technology.

“Our old crime line has dwindled down so much that we don’t get very many tips that way at all,” he said. “So this is a new approach for us. You’ve got kids who are 11 or 12 years old who know how to text.”

The messages are first sent to CitizenObserver’s headquarters in Minneapolis, where their source is encrypted by a computer before being relayed to a computer at the Sanford Police Department.

Sanford City Manager Hal Hegwer said he got the idea at an economic development conference during which he saw a video displaying how widespread cell phone usage is.

“I was just thinking about how (text message technology) could help the city, how it would blend into the city’s operations in the future,” he said.

The program costs $1,000 annually, Hegwer said.

Gray said the department is pushing the program in places where young people are.

“We’re putting out posters and business cards with information on how to text us at the high schools, the colleges, some bars,” he said. “As always, we want to stress that even the smallest bit of information could be important to us. We never know if it’s the one thing we need to break a case.”

Citizens interested in texting information to the Sanford Police Department should enter “919SPD” followed by a message about their tip and send it to 847411 (Tip411).

End of Article

Thanks to City Manager Hal Hegwer for bringing this idea to our Police Department and our city.  for more information please call Hal Hegwer at 775-8201

Should Sanford Sale Bulk Water To Neighboring Communities?

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The City of Sanford currently profits between  $350,000. and $400,000. annually from bulk water sales to neighboring cities and counties.  These bulk sales are from surplus water our plant can produce and will at no time effect the availability of water to the citizens of Sanford and Lee County.

*Do we have excess water to sell since we reciently experianced a drought?

Yes, we do.  The city currently uses approximately 7 million gallons per day, depending on time of year, etc.  There is a constant flow of water in the Cape Fear River of approximately 320 million gallons per day. This is measured down stream at Lillington and regulated by the Army Corps of Engineers at the Jordon Lake Dam discharge.

*Are bulk water sales good for our city?

The revenues help offset cost at the plant.  This means that these bulk sales help keep the home owners water bill a little lower. 

*How long are the contracts for these sales?

Most are for many years with an annual adjustment or review of pricing. They are all very simular.

*Do we charge less for bulk sales versus what regular rates are inside the city?

The most recient contract the city entered into was with the Town of Goldston.  This agreement offered bulk sales at $2.02  per 1000 gallons.  Plus a guarentee of purchasing 100,000 gallons per day.  Plus a $25,000 annual fee.  Goldston will purchase between 100,000 gallons and 250,000 gallons per day.  With all the variables considered…….Goldston will pay between $2.27 and $2.76 per 1000 gallons.  (This is calculated on 100,000 gallons per day usage = 2.76    250,000 gallons per day usage = 2.27)

The compariable rate for this ammount of usage inside the city is $2.23 per 1000 gallons with no purchase guarentee and no annual fee.

All things considered………..$2.23 City …………… $2.27 to $2.76 Goldston.  

*Are there any fees the city will pay for running water lines etc.?

Goldston will run all connecting lines to Sanford.  Once inspected and approved……the city will be responsible for the lines in Lee County . Goldston will be responsible for the water lines in Chatham County.  All water lines will have to be inspected and meet city specifications.

*Are there any other communities Goldston can purchase water from?

Yes there are several other communities that were considered by Goldston before contracting with Sanford.  The bidding on the sale of bulk water is very competitive.  Reason being, there are only just so many neighbors you can sell to that need water……… and bulk sales allow you to add to your bottom line. This helps keep the cost of water for the home owner as low as possible.

If you have any questions concerning this issue, please contact hal Hegwer at 919-775-8201 or Vic Zarr at  919-775-8230.

 

 

Regular Post Coming Soon.

Please forgive the lack of post in the past 45 days or so. Hopefully, by the end of the week, I’ll be posting again on about a 7 to 10 day interval.

If there are questions you have or areas you’d like to know a little more about…..Please let me know by leaving a comment.

Thanks Again!

Steve B

Future Possibilities: Solar Powerd Trash Compactors

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The “Big Belly” solar powered trash compactor  was just one of the many new innovative items and ideas presented at the National League of Cities Exposition in Orlando, Florida.   http://www.bigbellysolar.com/ 

“Big Belly” uses 100% solar power.  This unit does not need direct sunlight and is designed with shade from buildings and trees, etc. in mind. 

This unit holds five times the volume of a normal sized trash container.  City crews would have to empty this can five times less than a regular trash container.  Depending on the location, this type unit could be an asset to many cities. 

 Areas such as parks, green-ways, etc. that are off the beaten path, would be perfect for “Big Belly.”  These areas are subject to small amounts of litter, not bagged trash from passing automobiles.  The volume of trash is fairly predictable and vehicle traffic in these areas could be kept to a bare minimal.

“Big Belly” cost a little more than twice as much as a decorative trash container.  This cost difference, possible dump savings, the pros and the cons, would have to be discussed before possibly choosing “Big Belly” for locati0ns in our city.  With the city beginning to get more and more involved with parks and green-ways…..cost saving ideas like this may be just around the corner.



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