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Milestones – A Safer Community? – Opinion

Your Santa Clara Police Department has gotten what it wants thanks to Mayor Lisa Gillmor, who successfully orchestrated an enviable pay package for the folks in blue.

This small force of 150 officers can continue to boast they are the second highest-paid cops in California.

In addition, the police union was successful in keeping the police chief under their control, with no oversight from the City Council or Santa Clara city manager. The recent election sealed the deal to keep the chief of police an elected office. Being elected, chiefs are answerable only to themselves — and their political bosses at the union — with no oversight, direction, or review by the City Council or city manager. This vote was decided by less than 30% of eligible voters.

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So, in this case, voters will get what they didn’t vote for since the majority didn’t vote.

This leaves the Santa Clara PD in a peculiar position. The City refuses to explain the chain of command in a department where the union-chosen police chief reports to nobody, and the assistant police chiefs report to the city manager. Leaving the rank and file accountable to … well, that’s unclear.

So, how are local neighborhoods doing under this new regime?

Here are a few observations on my little community, just a short walk from city hall. In just the past ten days, we’ve had over 100 mailboxes raided and the mail stolen — not once, but twice. This week, we had two cars in the neighborhood that had all their tires stolen during the night.

Then there are the hot rod maniacs, pushing pedal to the metal, doing 60 MPH on our residential streets. Some nights you would think Scott Boulevard was the Indianapolis Speedway.

I remember the days (and nights) of marked and unmarked police cars that patrolled our community. Santa Clara was a safe place to walk, and the often-present patrol cars offered visible assurance of safety and discouraged malefactors.

Santa Clara does have a jail cell where offenders could be held. It is a little larger than a broom closet and perhaps a night or two sleeping there might be a memorable deterrent.

Remember the old TV show “Crime and Punishment?” There was a time we citizens believed in that marvelous deterrent … consequences.

The outrageous idea that crime is okay … borders on insanity. You learned at an early age there were some things you just didn’t do.

So, until we vote in sanity and vote out insanity, we must as a community use our own God-given common sense. Maybe a public outcry will help the police chief focus more on community safety, and less on the politics of the next election.

Previous Milestones:
Milestones: Lawless Law Should Be Unlawful! – Opinion
Milestones – Maybe Give It Up! – Opinion

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1 Comment
  1. Fred 1 month ago
    Reply

    Actually, the people I see speeding the most are police officers, as they yak away on their phones.

    I’m sure they’re on a “silent call” and are on the phone with their dispatcher. Lol

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