Welcome to the second Manager’s Update

This update kicks off a new feature, where I will tie in our Town’s five Strategic Initiatives to our efforts as I engage you on our current events. The five strategic initiatives approved by the Town Council guide our priorities as we look to our future as a premier community in the state. They focus on areas that hit close to home: community livability, being a technology leader, smart budgeting, strong infrastructure and economic development.

Strategic Initiative: Community Livability

As the parent of a seven year old, and two older daughters, I understand the importance of the community programs that we offer in our Town, and I wanted to start this update with some news about the success of our Fall Music and Halloween Festival held on Saturday, Oct. 29. Our families are our number one priority, and as the Town Manager, helping ensure you have places to go with your family that offer a safe atmosphere and a healthy outlet is a priority. This year we drew together about 8,000 of our residents for a fun and healthy time in Freestone Park. I also wanted to share a few photos of the highlights, which this year included a Stingray tank and aquarium, a pony ride, and even five children’s authors. In our effort to always make our successes bigger, this year we also sold discount tickets online for the first time, and expanded the hours significantly. We changed the entry and the parking to make it easy to arrive and join in on the fun. Thank you for being active in our Town, and if you attended please take a moment to answer our poll about what you thought of the changes.

Strategic Initiative: Proactively Address Infrastructure Needs

Infrastructure: Our Town has a remarkable character and infrastructure, particularly when you consider that we were the fourth fastest growing community, of more than 100,000 residents, in the nation last decade. Smart planning with a uniquely small staff to resident ratio is the heritage we live daily as we enjoy our quality and low cost lifestyle. Now it is time to plan for the next phase, to ensure that we maintain our beautiful character. Strong infrastructure planning is one of our five Strategic Initiatives, and we have a high-tech solution that also takes into account another Strategic Initiative to be a technology leader. The Infrastructure Assessment and Replacement Plan combines the efforts of our streets, water, wastewater and technology services staffs. The first phase of this comprehensive infrastructure replacement and repair plan will be complete by the end of this year, focusing on our water infrastructure. This plan is a tool that will help us to project what our infrastructure needs are. With this smart plan in place, you can expect Gilbert to be as beautiful 100 years from now, as it is today.

Strategic Initiative: Be a Technology Leader

Safe streets: In another effort to maintain our safety with a high tech approach, our Data Driven Approach to Crime and Traffic Safety is on track to start early next year. The use of this less expensive and more sophisticated software will make our streets safer, and ensure that our public safety officers are deployed right where they are needed the most, when we need them most. Gilbert Police Chief Tim Dorn states it best: “Data Driven Approach to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS) is a law enforcement operational model supported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the United States Department of Justice. DDACTS expands upon the intelligence-led policing philosophy currently in use by the Gilbert Police Department by integrating location based crime data and traffic crash data to establish effective and efficient methods for deploying resources. Technology is utilized to identify areas that have high incidences of crime and traffic collisions. Traffic enforcement and patrol resources are then allocated into these areas to conduct high visibility traffic enforcement operations in order to detect and deter criminal activity and to reduce traffic collisions through increased citizen contacts. Citations, arrests and enforcement action is taken when criminal activity is identified or when hazardous traffic violations are observed. Positive citizen contacts are made for minor violations such as equipment violations, which will provide officers with an opportunity to provide citizens with information on how to report suspicious or known criminal activity. Partnership with the community is an important component of this program. The primary goal of DDACTS is to reduce traffic collisions and to identify persons who utilize vehicles and our roadways to facilitate criminal activity.

The application of high visibility traffic enforcement is a proven and effective countermeasure that addresses both crime and collisions. The reliance on technology and data provides a scientifically based method to deploy police resources while respecting the constitutional rights of our citizens.”

Thank you for staying actively engaged in our Town. We are committed to operating an open, transparent government that responds to your needs. Have a wonderful weekend.

~ Patrick Banger