Public Safety: Annual Report FY03
The Department of Public Safety is responsible for providing police protection, transportation services, parking control and locksmith service to the University Community. The police operation serves the campus 24 hours a day, preventing crime through constant patrol, presenting educational programs and investigating and prosecuting those who commit crimes on campus. The Parking Services Division provides reliable intra-campus shuttle service to all facilities on campus. The Division is also tasked with providing safe and reliable transportation to student groups traveling off campus to participate in athletic, academic or social events. Parking control personnel, through enforcement of the University’s parking code and maintenance of the traffic and parking signage, keep traffic flowing smoothly through campus. The Lock Shop maintains the security of the campus by maintaining the locks, rekeying doors as necessary, and keeping track of the personnel issued keys to the campus.
Department Statement of Goals / Assessment Process / Assessment Results
Public Safety seeks to provide as safe a campus as possible, to allow students and faculty to teach, learn and perform research without fear of crime or disturbance. The Department also seeks to provide through the shuttle service and parking enforcement, the orderly and rapid movement of people throughout the campus. By maximizing the use of existing parking facilities through an efficient transportation system, the University is better able utilize its limited resources to support the academic mission of the University.
Crime statistics are monitored to assess any change in the amount of crime as well as to determine “hot spots”. Identifying trouble spots allows us to move personnel into the area in order to deter future incidents. Parking spaces are inventoried at the beginning of the school year. We then count the available spaces during the peak times. From this we are able to project if additional parking must be provided.
The Department Statement of Outcomes / An Example
During this past year we were hit with a significant number of criminal acts in a residence hall. Vandalism, alcohol and drug problems as well as some acts of violence were noted from the review. This information was used to justify the addition of two additional officer positions, which will be assigned to the residence halls.
The parking survey showed the number of available spaces during the peak class times. The number of available spaces was compared with projections for additional student enrollment and spaces that will be lost to construction. These numbers projected a deficit of several hundred spaces. Using this data, it was determine that a new lot should be built and the off-campus shuttle initiated. The lot will be completed in August and the off campus shuttle will begin on the first day of class.
Health of the Department
We are falling dramatically behind the local police agencies in our salary scale. Starting pay for our personnel is $6,000 less than what Carrollton and Villa Rica start their officers at. Their starting pay is equal to what our supervisors with four years experience are currently making. Though there are advantages to working for the University, they do not compensate for the higher wages offered elsewhere. My goal is to be within 95% of what our main competitors are paying.
We need an additional officer on Day Watch to replace the one lost in the last budget cut. The officers run from call to call and seldom have time to do preventative patrol. We also need a third officer in the bike patrol so that we can insure two officers working the halls every night of the week. These officers will patrol, work investigations, and provide crime prevention programming for the halls.
We need an additional locksmith. The size of the campus is increasing and so are the demands on our sole locksmith. We do not have a preventative maintenance program nor do we have a campus wide re-keying ability. In the long run we would save the campus money and lessen liability if such programs were implemented.
The Department continues to improve in technology, training, and planning. In the past year all police officers were trained and certified in CPR and First Aid. Riot training was repeated and all personnel were re-certified in the use of the Departments less lethal weapons. We also sent all officers through the basic Weapons of Mass Destruction class provided by the State.
We replaced 1/3 of our computers, which is the standard we have established for the Department. This allows us to take advantage of new software and prevents us from having to replace all of our systems at once.
The Incident Command Center was established and is fully operational. From the Center we can operate all University functions (Facilities, Registrar, Residence Life, etc.) so in the event of a disaster, we can restore campus services as soon as possible. We continue to review software and equipment needs so that if it is ever needed, the Center will be able to respond to the need. Additional radio equipment and lighting sources were purchased and stored in the Center.
New emergency plans have been created and distributed. We also held our first table-top disaster drill with Residence Life to test our plans and create a working relationship between the two departments.
In the past year Public Safety has provided the following training to its staff.
1) Sent one staff member to Boston for training on the records management system
2) Sent one officer to the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators conference in Cleveland Ohio.
3) Sent the Parking Supervisor to Kentucky for training in Parking Management.
4) The Department’s firearms instructors attended the annual meeting of the Georgia Law Enforcement Firearms Instructors.
5) The Director attended the International Chiefs of Police Conference in Minneapolis Minnesota. He also attended the winter and summer conferences of the Georgia Chiefs of Police in Callaway Gardens and Savannah respectively. He attended the Governor’s Emergency Management Conference in Jekyll Island as well as the quarterly meetings of the Georgia Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators.
6) All patrol officers received at minimum their 20 hours of required training. Most officers received additional training hours and all attended the Weapons of Mass Destruction.
7) All bus drivers and PCO’s were certified in CPR, 1st Aid and infectious disease control. Physicals were performed on all drivers to ensure they were capable of operating the buses in a safe manner.
- Other Awards and Distinctions
In 2003 the Director serves as the President of the Georgia Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators.
A member of the parking staff was selected as employee of the year for the University.