Madison Police Department explains ‘community policing’ concept to council
By Tara DeRock Mahoney
Senior Staff Writer
Most of the time, a patrol car parked in your driveway is not good news. But that’s not the case for Madison residents, who are slowly getting used to a new “Community Policing” initiative set up by the city’s police force.
“This is an old idea,” said Madison Police Chief Travis Stapp. “I want to give [former] Chief Neal Thompson credit…he always encouraged us to get out and talk to people, get to know the people in town.”
Under the new program, each city officer will have a section of town that he or she will get to know—each officer represents about 100 city residences.
“This is a collaborative effort between residents and the police,” said Chief Stapp.
Residents should soon be meeting their representative officer, if they have not already; each officer is instructed to make contact with every household in his or her area.
Citizens are encouraged to tell their community officers about any specific problems in the neighborhood. Since the program started in recent weeks, the Madison police force has logged about 450 citizen contacts.
“It’s just getting out and talking to people and finding out their concerns,” said Chief Stapp.
In other city news, the city let a contract to complete curbs and gutters for the new town park to Rendrag Construction, a local firm, and work should begin on that project within the next couple of weeks, said City Manager David Nunn. Bids for the renovation of the cottage on the property will be opened this Friday, and the re-advertisement for a third part of the park will be re-bid within the coming weeks.
A number of utility poles around the park will also be coming down in the days to come, as Georgia Power works with the city to put area utility wires underground.
“Three or four poles will come down, and the overhead lines on Thomason and West Washington Streets will be removed,” said Nunn.