Commentary from the Comptroller’s Office
September 21, 2012
Comptroller Darlene Green voted Wednesday at the Board of Estimate and Apportionment meeting to support a $300,000 transfer that will increase funding for enhancing “Hot Spot” policing efforts in the City of St. Louis. “Hot Spot” policing has proven to be an effective tool for the police in their fight against crime. Just last week, St. Louis County police reported a drop in crime in the areas where they have employed the “Hot Spot” policing tool. While the $300,000 transfer will further the use of “Hot Spot” policing in the city for now, it is only a temporary solution and we need to develop permanent funding solutions to increase police presence and reduce crime in the city.
That is why Comptroller Green is reaching out to St. Louis University President, Father Lawrence Biondi, for help. The Comptroller is asking that St. Louis University consider entering into an agreement with the City of St. Louis to increase the presence of police around the growing urban campus. Partnering with the City of St. Louis would mean St. Louis University is supplementing its current campus police officers with St. Louis City police officers to enhance public safety on the streets of the sprawling urban campus. It means the University would be taking an additional step to protect its students, faculty, and staff. The student population makeup of over 14,000 is about 60% out of state. The University will be bolstering their efforts to improve public safety in and around the campus to protect a student body that just suffered the loss of a former SLU student, Megan Boken, in the Central West End. Police presence is sometimes the only thing between a would be offender and a victim of a crime.
The Comptroller is committed to diligently seeking solutions to close the funding gap for public safety and to help reduce crime in our city. The city police department absolutely supports any help from the administration to fund effective “Hot Spot” policing efforts. Both President Reed and Mayor Slay voted with Comptroller Green for the $300,000 transfer. And the Mayor supports partnering with SLU in our fight against crime.