Although violent crimes in our community have decreased over the years, petty crime has increased
Downtown businesses are plagued with ongoing situations: smash-and-grabs, vandalism, illegal camping in parks and doorways, blatant drug use and dealing, and other illicit behaviors not acceptable to our community. Besides increased jail space, we need enhanced mental health services as well as solutions for the homeless and needy in our community.
Plans to improve public safety
- I plan to figure out a way to build new jail facilities and accept the state grants, which have been sent back twice by the current Supervisors, for construction of needed jail facilities. Not all of society’s ills can be cured with jail time, but the option must be in place and available when needed. I intend to see that we meet these needs.
- We must address the addiction crisis affecting so many families. I plan to look into programs with a cost-benefit ratio that would work within the county budget, yet help people with addictions become positively contributing members of our community.
- With the 2018 legalization of marijuana, I would propose that Shasta County devise a plan to tax all cannabis related industries to fortify the Sheriff’s budget. Shasta Lake City is an example of how this can be a win-win for our community. I would work diligently with the Sheriff, cannabis stakeholders, MADD, the public, and the County Administrative Officer to create a workable strategy.
History of helping enhance public safety
REDDING POLICE STATION
I helped make our new police station a reality. Most of the years on the Council I kept pushing for a new police station (I even got it named after Chief Blankenship!). Previous Councils had money to accomplish this, but had made it a low priority so it never got done. Mayor Bosetti and I focused on making it happen, even though we were in the midst of the Great Recession. Working together as a team, we realized the goal of our new police station, and still maintained the City’s cash reserves.
A few years ago, I travelled to Chico to see the Methadone clinic there. Methadone and newer medications are available to bind to the brain in such a way that the craving for opiates ceases. Subsequently, the Chico organization expanded into the Redding area. The skeptical neighbors were pleasantly surprised that there has been no reported increase in crime nearby, proving that those with opiate addictions that want to “get clean” really do succeed when there are programs available to help them achieve this goal.
I established a sit-lie ordinance for the City of Redding. This makes it illegal to sit or lie on Redding sidewalks and in front of doorways except for specified events like the Rodeo Parade, Kool April Nights, etc. This ordinance is one more tool for the police to have in their tool box when dealing with unacceptable transient behavior downtown.
MASSAGE PARLOR/SEX TRAFFICKING ORDINANCE
I worked with One Safe Place Director Jean King and Matt Moseley to craft a massage parlor/sex trafficking ordinance. Since then, the police have arrested several people and closed establishments related to this illicit prostitution.
When the Administrative Office of the Courts (the AOC) noted that Shasta County needed a new courthouse, I worked hard to keep it located near the existing courthouse. Other sites were being considered: Anderson, Airport Road, North Market Street. I formed a committee of active citizens to speak to elected leaders about the importance of staying near the same vicinity - so many ancillary businesses were co-located there already (bail bonds, court reporters, law offices), and severe blight would occur in the downtown core when all of these properties were abandoned for a different locale. I personally travelled to San Francisco to address the AOC in person. We were successful in our endeavors: the new courthouse will be built directly across from the existing courthouse as funding becomes available from the state.