State of the City Mayor Bob Buckhorn - Tuesday, March 26, 2013 - 10:30 a.m. - Kress Building

Public Safety

Host of the Republican National Convention

When the world was watching, the City of Tampa set a new a standard for policing large scale political events. Not only did they keep the Republican National Convention safe, they also managed to reduce crime throughout the city during the event. The proof is in the numbers: only two RNC arrests and no broken windows.

The Tampa Police Department set the tone for the convention with two years of planning. Officers exercised great restraint and quickly diffused potential tipping points. The countless hours of training ensured law enforcement's response was strategic and controlled. When protestors halted their march to lay down in an intersection, a patient wall of officers waited them out. Many months were dedicated to building the right strategy and deployment to ensure officers created a safe environment for the demonstrations, but they were also prepared to quickly stop any criminal activity.

Call Center Created to Support RNC

The City of Tampa implemented a 24/7 call center in support of the 2012 Republican National Convention (RNC). The RNC Call Center provided up to date information on any additional street closures that may occur, parking options, basic directional assistance, and hospitality information for visitors.

Bright Lights Safe Nights
Street Lighting Initiative

Mayor Buckhorn has committed $2.2 million over the next five years to keep our streets safe and improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods. Each year, a city-wide inventory of street lights will be done. Dimming street lights will be replaced, and any tree branches that are obstructing the light will be trimmed. In total, after five years, approximately 8,400 new street lights will be added to the city's overall grid, expanding the current street light network by 30%.

Launch of SAFECOP

SAFECOP has enabled officers to solve crimes faster and more efficiently, by putting real-time crime information at every officer's fingertips. They are now armed with crime maps, offender information, the ability to create bulletins and blog department-wide about crime. It has reinvented TPD's approach to intelligence led policing, thus improving the safety of our citizens and officers.

Reduction in Crime

Despite a challenging year focused on planning and training for the RNC, Tampa Police officers were once again able to surpass their goal for crime reduction. Crime dropped 4.1% in Tampa in 2012 which translates to fewer victims every year in our city. The department is constantly tweaking its approach to fighting crime, but one thing that remains constant in all this change is the commitment to working closely with our citizens in every neighborhood.

Social Media

As social media has grown as a communication tool, the Tampa Police Department has made it a key component of its outreach to our citizens. We see it as a modern community oriented policing strategy. Through social media, we release video of unsolved crimes, inform our citizens with crime prevention tips, showcase unique operations or just highlight good old fashioned police work. This new approach to reaching our citizens has created community interaction in a way we've never experienced before now. By creating fun social media police videos, we've shown the community that our officers are friendly, approachable and committed to serving them.

Tax Fraud

After two years of Tampa Police officers battling epidemic tax fraud, the IRS has joined forces with the department and created a Tax Fraud Alliance. This new approach ensures all possible resources are focused on protecting taxpayers from identity theft. TPD's new Fraud Squad detectives have also been sworn in as federal agents to crush the tax schemes that have stolen millions from our citizens.

Fire Station 22

Opened Fire Station 22, located on Cross Creek Boulevard in New Tampa, is nearly completed and set to open in early April. The new $1.7 million facility was funded through an ARRA (stimulus) grant.

TIGER Geographic Information System

TIGER is a Situational Awareness Dashboard, also known as a Common Operating Picture, or COP. This geospatial approach to information management for law enforcement and first responders has been used successfully by the Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security for many years.
 

Streetlights

 

RNC Call Center

 

EOC Preparation

 

RNC

 

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