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FY 2017-18 Council Goal: Public Safety
Maintaining adequately staffed and trained police and fire departments, including neighborhood patrols, crime-prevention programs, and emergency personnel, is vital to protecting Roseville’s quality of life and maintaining rapid emergency and medical response times. This priority is reflected in the budget, where public safety expenditures represent 72.4 percent of total revenues from sales and property taxes—the primary source of funding for public safety.
Low Crime Rates and Community Policing
Roseville’s 2016 total crime rate fell 2 percent from 2015 levels and is still far lower on a per-capita basis than it was 20 years ago. The city’s violent crime rate remains one of the lowest in the Sacramento region. The city’s rate of property crime runs higher than the state average due to active and thorough reporting by the community, our large retail sector, and our position as a more affluent community with a low fear of crime.
The Police Department is committed to the principles of community-oriented policing, using partnerships and problem-solving techniques to proactively address the immediate conditions that give rise to public safety issues such as crime, social disorder, and fear of crime. Rather than simply responding to crimes once they have been committed, community policing concentrates on preventing crime and eliminating the atmosphere of fear it creates. Earning the trust of the community and asking residents and businesses to be stakeholders in their own safety enables law enforcement to better understand and address both the needs of the community and the factors that contribute to crime.
In addition to patrol, the department’s services include criminal investigations, vice and narcotics investigations, crime suppression, traffic enforcement, youth service officers in the schools, animal control, social services, and youth intervention services in partnership with the Roseville Police Activities League.
Police Staffing Analysis for a Changing Environment
The Police Department is maintaining its authorized staffing levels through targeted recruiting and efficient hiring programs. It’s striving to hire the best entry-level and experienced new employees, in both the sworn officer and professional staff ranks. The department strives to maintain high standards and quality service by carefully selecting qualified candidates, training them well, and providing the best possible continuing professional development for all employees.
Our community will continue to grow, and the state’s criminal justice system continues to work to reduce incarceration rates in favor of community-based supervision of offenders. The Police Department will continue to evolve, too, modifying our strategies to adapt to the changing criminal justice environment and the needs of our community. To do that effectively, it will continue to build on its strong partnerships with other City departments, law enforcement agencies, social service agencies, community organizations and the business community. One of the major missions of its newly formed Social Services Unit is to build and enhance those intra-agency and community collaborations so it can meet community challenges with a comprehensive, coordinated community response.
An outside consultant recently completed a staffing analysis and presented the findings to City Council. The findings of the report are consistent with other departmental performance audits, which identified the need for additional staff to maintain service levels. The analysis will help City and police department leaders establish goals to provide high-quality service
Building Trust in our Community
The Police Department is focused on continuing to build trust in our community. The department hosts community events throughout the year, and representatives regularly attend neighborhood association meetings and other community events. Another way the department strives to build trust is through accountability and transparency. The department maintains a Professional Standards Unit that regularly updates policies, conducts internal audits of critical procedures, oversees professional standards, oversees professional training standards, and investigates citizen complaints and other matters of concern. The department responds to inquiries from the public in a timely manner, and endeavors to provide as much information as circumstances and the law allow. The department strives to maintain an organizational culture that values public trust, inclusion, professional competence and service.
Police Social Services Unit
The goal of the Social Services Unit is to bring various stakeholders to the table in an effort to provide resources and support with long-term stability for individuals. The Social Services Unit engages various community-based organizations, non-profit organizations, and City and county departments to establish a comprehensive social services plan for those needing support. The unit is managed by a social worker and consists of a sergeant, problem-oriented policing (POP) officer and youth-service officers. It has patrol officers trained in mental health who serve on its mental-health team. Its officers work in conjunction with mental health and service advocates, practitioners, social workers, and interns to provide resources and referrals. It also has an embedded Placer County Probation Officer and the support of a county mental-health practitioner who both work exclusively with a caseload that comprises homeless individuals currently on probation. Social work interns who are earning their degrees from California State University at Sacramento also provide direct resourcing and support to homeless individuals and families.
Fire Response Times and Service Levels
Fire stations are located throughout the community in order to strategically place resources within an acceptable response time. Response time is one of the most important measurements of fire department performance. Response times and resources are evaluated on a regular basis to ensure that the Fire Department is providing the most efficient and effective services to the community.
The population and geography of Roseville continue to grow, which have affected response times within our districts. To maintain acceptable response times as our city grows, we must eventually build capacity within our budget to fund construction of a new fire station and the estimated $3 million annual cost if it is staffed according to current staffing models.
Staffing vacancies continue to be a priority for the Fire Department. FY2016-17 saw a large number of retirements, which left the department with several vacancies going into FY2017-18. The Fire Department has begun the recruitment process and is looking to hire in the Firefighter/Paramedic I classification in the first few months of FY2017-18. The goal is to have these individuals on shift in late summer or early Fall of 2017.
Relocation of Fire Station No. 1
Construction has begun on a modern facility for downtown’s Fire Station 1. The station is expected to be completed in Spring 2018. Relocation of crews and equipment will occur as soon as the new station is ready for occupancy.
Evolving Service Model
The scope of emergency response from the Roseville Fire Department has changed over time. The department that was initially organized for fire response now responds primarily to medical calls, and continues to respond to fire, technical rescue, hazardous materials, major causality incidents, and other types of emergency calls. The Fire Department is working to identify new service-delivery models to maximize efficiencies and live within budgetary constraints. By optimizing the deployment and staffing of response units, overall costs can be reduced. The department will be studying the effectiveness of the number and type of units sent on responses along with the number of personnel those units are staffed with to provide a comprehensive analysis of its service-delivery models. The goal of this effort is to provide a high level of safety and customer service while reducing costs.
Use of GPS in Location-Assisted Dispatching
With a goal to improve response times, the City’s Public Safety Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system sends the closest unit to an incident, decreasing call processing times as well. This is made possible by the recent installation of GPS units on fire apparatus, which constantly report their location to CAD. When an emergency call comes in to Dispatch, CAD is then able to recommend the closest fire unit with the appropriate capabilities and the shortest travel time to the incident.
Additional Revenue Sources
The department continues to explore new revenue streams, including maximizing use of the Fire Training Center in instances where full cost recovery can be maintained.