Few weeks back, we directed you to an online survey Dallas City Council candidate Ann Margolin was taking as she vies for Mitchell Rasansky's District 13 seat at the horseshoe. Well, the results are in, and Margolin writes in a mass e-mail sent to her would-be constituency today that the No. 1 issue facing voters come May is .... crime! "By far." As in: "The bottom line: We need to add officers, put them on the street, and give them the tools they need to fight crime! Their presence will move our police force to PREVENTING crime, not just RESPONDING to it." The full missive, which includes her other Top Four issues, follows.
Margolin today discovered the ballot will be one candidate lighter, following Raj Narayanan's decision to bow out; it's a two-person race now, and already the well-funded Brint Ryan has signs planted throughout District 13. Super Dave ain't callin' this "the most expensive and competitive district-level council race in city history" for nothing.
Two hundred seventy seven people have taken my "Top Five Issues Facing Dallas" survey. Thank you! While the survey was not scientific (scroll down to the bottom for results), it validated the concerns I've heard from residents across our district: Crime is the top issue by far.
The bottom line: We need to add officers, put them on the street, and give them the tools they need to fight crime! Their presence will move our police force to PREVENTING crime, not just RESPONDING to it.
Overall Dallas crime dropped an average of 10% this year. We can applaud this progress, however looking at comparable Texas and US cities, our crime statistics are still high. I understand the scope of this issue and will work to fight crime by: Growing our police force from 3400 to 4000 officers which translates to about 3 officers per thousand residents, up from the current 2.6. Continuing recruitment incentives and monitoring other cities and law enforcement agencies in order to remain competitive. Supporting our police with improved equipment, technology and training. For example:
--Police cars last year were often out of service due to age and need for repairs.
--Our existing data base often fails to identify individuals with arrest warrants when they are stopped for traffic violations.
Supporting the juvenile curfew law proposed by the Dallas City Council's Public Safety Committee. Reduing [sic] truancy will reduce crime. Supporting neighborhood associations and crime watch groups because they help police bring crime down. We deserve to be safe in our homes and on our streets. When it comes to ridding District 13 of crime, I've already been at work, getting people together and getting things done.
--I have a proven track record when it comes to dealing with > neighborhood crime. I've been a crime victim recently myself and I have zero tolerance for those who want to harm the quality of life in our area.
--As a Park Board member I spent more time working with neighborhoods to fight crime in the parks than anything else I did. When neighbors around Peter Pan Park complained about drug dealers in the park I got the police together with the neighbors. The police increased patrols and made 6 arrests for drug dealing within the next 3 weeks.
--When neighbors near Jamestown Park heard gun shots in the park I went with crime watch leaders to visit Assistant Chief Elliston at the North Central Division. The police increased patrols and the gun shots stopped.
Over 129 of you left comments on the survey. You and your neighbors told me you are concerned about the state of education and schools, property taxes, arts and culture as well as enviromental [sic] issues. I share a tremendous interest in these areas as well and will share my thoughts with you in upcoming emails.