Public Safety Task Force

Steering Members of the Task Force were selected by the Town Council. Steering Members included Vice Mayor Michael Collins as Chairman, Council Member Dan Schweiker, Council Member David Sherf, former Vice Mayor Mary Hamway, and Police Department Volunteer Association Co-President Larry Fink.

The Task Force was also open to non-voting general members, with any resident of the Town of Paradise Valley eligible to serve as a general member. However, only those general members who attended and participated in 50% of the regularly scheduled Task Force meetings were to be officially recognized as Task Force members with their names included in the final report.

A total of 48 residents signed up to participate on the Task Force. A total of 31 residents met participation requirements and are identified as General Members in the final report.

Overview & Mission

On January 24, 2013 the Town of Paradise Valley Town Council adopted Resolution 1270 by a 6-1 vote to create the Mayor’s Task Force on Public Safety to review the Town's community policing policy as it relates to crime prevention and community outreach (CP&CO). The goal of the Task Force was to prepare a report on findings and recommendations in sufficient time to be considered by the Town Council during its 2013/14 budget deliberations.

Process PSTF
Mayor's Task Force on Public Safety The Task Force met each Tuesday in the Town Hall Boardroom commencing February 5, 2013 and concluding April 16, 2013. A total of 11 Task Force meetings over an 11- week period were held. Most meetings began with a thirty-minute Steering Member discussion, followed by a two-hour General Member meeting.

Several meetings were held to inform and educate Task Force members on the history and philosophy of community-oriented policing. Four working groups were established to research and report back to the membership on specific areas of interest. Steering members volunteered to chair each working group and made periodic updates to the membership on the status of their progress.

All meetings were webcast live with recordings made available on the Town’s website the following day. Agendas, background literature related to community policing, and meeting minutes were also made available on the Town’s website.

The Town of Paradise Valley Mayor's Task Force on Public Safety voted to approve thefinal report on findings and recommendations on April 16, 2013 and forwarded it to the Town Council.

Findings & Recommendations
The following recommendations were made with a focus on desired outcomes and not the methods and tactics used to achieve those outcomes. Details on each recommendation are provided in Section 4 of the report. Task Force recommendations were to:
  • Provide and sustain effective CP&CO supervision, execution and administrative support staffing levels.
  • Provide and sustain necessary patrol division staffing levels to: 1) ensure the safety of the officers on duty by providing adequate backup support, 2) maintain a minimum three district division of the Town for community policing implementation, 3) increase patrol officer visibility within their assigned districts, and 4) improve patrol-level problem solving and community interaction and engagement.
  • Implement and sustain effective crime prevention programs to: 1) enhance law enforcement visibility and improve community engagement, 2) identify resident responsibilities, and 3) distribute timely information and training to residents and neighborhood and community organizations to support the shared responsibilities.
  • Require the Police Department to prepare a rolling Five-Year Strategic Plan for Community Policing that identifies crime prevention programs and community outreach practices and policies to be implemented.
  • Establish effective community outreach practices and policies to: 1) provide timely public safety information to residents and neighborhood and community organizations so they can improve their local security condition and assist law enforcement, and 2) facilitate effective two-way communication between the Town and its residents and neighborhood and community organizations to improve cooperative problem-solving.
  • Implement and sustain up-to-date core technologies and internal support systems to: 1) provide efficient and effective computer-aided dispatch and records management functionality, 2) give officers the ability to file reports and query data from their patrol vehicles, and 3) establish ongoing internal sustainment programs and policies.
Resident Perceptions, Observations & Expectations
Resident perceptions and observations were captured and collected along the way through note-taking and video-recording of the meetings. Compilations of these perceptions and observations are provided in Section 2 of the report.

Expectations for levels of service and quality of CP&CO were developed based on observations listed in Section 2, along with additional information and data distributed to the group and focused debate and discussion during Task Force meetings. These expectations are provided in Section 3 of the report.

Other Documents

Seminal literature from the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services and the Police Executive Research Forum were distributed to Task Force members and meeting time was spent reviewing and discussing the literature (see below).