Living in the Acacia District for more than 20 years, I have witnessed firsthand the unprecedented growth of our community.
Like many of you, I have seen Peoria grow from a small bedroom community to a thriving and vibrant city of 191,000 residents. Despite these changes, one thing has remained consistent throughout the years: Peoria is a safe city for residents, visitors and businesses, thanks to the hard work of the Peoria Police Department. For a long-time resident such as myself, this is great news – and I’m happy to report that Peoria will remain one of the safest cities in the Valley for many years to come.
As Peoria continues to adhere to its smart growth strategies, resident safety continues to be a top priority. In fact, the city’s budget is a direct reflection of this priority, with more than half of Peoria’s general fund solely dedicated to public safety. This level of investment from the general fund allows us to remain a police department of choice in the competitive law enforcement job market and not be surprised when population levels increase. Continuing this budget allocation means we will continue hiring. This allocation means more officers, more detectives, and more support personnel over time. Increased staffing combined with the right tools and technologies allow existing sworn officers to engage in more proactive policing activities. Just this year, additional steps have been taken to address the future needs of Peoria include:
• Addition of 15 new positions in 2022;
• Investment in new technologies to preserve life and property:
o Additional body-worn cameras
o Vehicle technology equipment
o Specialized software for background investigations
o Additional training supplies and surveillance devices
• New vehicles and crime predictive technology;
• Capital improvement projects to expand the existing Pinnacle Peak Public Safety Campus, including a new tactical range and evidence facility.
Over time, this council’s budget approach has shown its effectiveness. Both total crime rates and calls for service in Peoria have trended downward since 2015. As we know though, the role of any police department goes beyond criminal apprehension – it’s about connecting with the community they serve and building relationships that empower a safer community.
Peoria Police continues to offer a variety of services to meet resident needs. Programs such as the Youth Citizens Academy, vacation watch, motorcycle safety courses, and many others remain available to the residents of Peoria, free-of-charge.
Each year, Peoria Police host events across the community as a way to give back to the public they serve. Events such as Shop With A Cop, Getting Arizona Involved in Neighborhoods (G.A.I.N) and summer reading programs allow residents to interact with local officers who serve their community daily.
For those with a more data driven mindset – new mapping tools will soon allow residents review police incidents and get an up-to-date look at their neighborhood. With the help of the city’s IT department, Peoria Police will launch a new incident map this July. The new map is interactive for the user and provides a dashboard view of incidents. The community will also be able to submit a tip directly to the police department for anything listed. This new incident map along with the monthly crime statistic snapshot provide residents a clear and updated picture of what is happening in their community.
I’m proud to live in Peoria – and part of that pride comes from knowing my family and I are safe in our homes and throughout our daily life. It’s because of the dedicated work of the Peoria Police Department that we can enjoy this peace of mind. With thoughtful outreach and transparent communication, our Peoria Police continue to serve the community beyond the seat of a patrol car. I am thankful for their service as we continue to shape the future of our wonderful city.
All the tools, events and programs mentioned here are available online by visiting peoriaaz.gov/police. My inbox is always open as well. You are always welcome to drop me a note at email@example.com.
Have a great summer!
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