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R.T. Rybak: A Great Leader for a Great City Volunteer Contribute

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Day in the Life: March 9

A very busy week that left me little time for blogging....Much of it was dominated by public safety work. Chief McManus and I announced the STOP division in the police department...a flexible tactical unit that we can deploy strategically to do proactive policing....The intent is to give better ability to have manpower that can be used to quickly respond to a growning challenge in an area. The most pressing need right now are sections of north Minneapolis where we had a very tragic shooting in the Best Steak House on Penn.... but it will be moved quickly depending on need. (FYI: The Best Steak House opens for business again Sunday and I encourage all of us to go to support them after they faced this tragedy.) Our Code 4 meetings each week identify safety trends and the STOP unit will give us another tool to address this.
At the time of the announcement we also announced we are hiring a new recruit class that will be on the street by summer. They will replace some of the more experienced officers who will be reassigned to STOP
Two other public safety developments: At the Empowerment Zone we approved about $250,000 in community based crime fighting grants. We are also continuing the work made possible by General Mills to coordinate other partners involved in fighting crime in north Minneapolis....The General Mills grant allowed the hiring of Chuck Wexler of the Police Executive Research Forum to work with regional, state and federal law enforcement agencies to coordinate all their efforts on attacking the problem...Wexler was involved in the successful efforts to combat crime and gangs in the Phillips neighborhood a decade ago, as was Mike Christenson, who leads the city's economic development team. Also involved in that effort back then was Ellen Lugar of General Mills, who helped create this partnership so we are happy to have this experienced team to help coordinate an all out attack on crime. (More on this coordinated effort in the next couple weeks.)

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