June Pleasant Hill Mayor's Message
Jun 01, 2016 04:47PM
● By Sue Noack
Sue Noack, Pleasant Hill Mayor
Pleasant Hill – A City that is Safe
Not long ago, the city council held a special public meeting to update the city’s goals and objectives. Our number one goal is to have “A city that is safe.” As part of this goal, a key objective is to ensure adequate public safety. The council adopted a number of action items to meet this objective, which included working with Neighborhood Watch, working with Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), and using social media to engage with the community. We also agreed to expand the school outreach program, improve traffic safety around schools, and continue to fund crossing guards at various school locations. The police department is also constantly working on developing strategies and programs to reduce crime and increase public safety.
Discussion with Police Chief John Moore
I sat down with Police Chief John Moore last week to discuss the issue of public safety. Pleasant Hill is 8 square miles with 115 miles of streets. At present, we have 40 police officers and are recruiting to bring that number up to 44. During the day, we typically have six officers patrolling the city. These officers do a great job focusing on heavily travelled areas and areas where speeding has become a consistent issue. Year-to-date, over 1,761 traffic citations have been issued, yet traffic issues persist. I have a son who rides his bike to school every day, and it worries me when I see speeding cars, sometimes running red lights, and drivers texting or talking on the phone.
I would ask everyone to consider a number of things before they get behind the wheel of a car:
· Put your phone away. Put it somewhere where you won’t be tempted to make a phone call or respond to a text. I was walking across an intersection the other day and three drivers of cars at the intersection were bobbing their heads up and down, clearly reading and texting.
· When there is a stop light or stop sign, stop when you get to it. If traffic and pedestrian traffic allows, then turn right on red. Look both ways, though not just where traffic is coming from. The pedestrian may be coming from the other direction.
· Give yourself enough time to drive the speed limit. So much of our driving in this town is in residential neighborhoods. It could be your child playing ball in the front yard and chasing it into the street.
· Teach your children bicycle and pedestrian safety.
The second topic Chief Moore and I discussed was property crimes. Pleasant Hill is fortunate to have very little crime against people; and while property crimes are a bit higher, they have decreased. Property crimes are mostly crimes of opportunity. Someone in need of money may see a laptop, an iPhone, or money in an empty car. Please make sure all valuables are removed when leaving a car, whether it is in your driveway or elsewhere. Other tips from the police include:
· Never leave the keys in your vehicle.
· Always lock the doors, even when you are away from the vehicle for a short time.
· Remove items (purses, phones, etc.) from the vehicle when possible. If you can’t take them out, make sure they are out of sight.
· Park in lighted areas.
Similar tips to reduce property crimes at home include:
· Make sure your garage door is closed, especially at night.
· If you are at home and someone unfamiliar knocks at your door, either indicate you are there but unable to answer or contact the police. This has been used to find out if homes are empty in order to enter undetected.
· Get to know your neighbors. They can be the eyes and the ears of the neighborhood and identify potential suspicious activities.
If you are interested in forming a Neighborhood Watch, please contact Pam Mosher of the Pleasant Hill Police Department. She can be reached at 925-288-4684 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.