By CAROL JOHNSON - ADDA Member - For the Star Beacon
The Ashtabula Downtown Development Association (ADDA) has entered into an agreement with the Ashtabula City Police Department to provide enhanced security in the downtown district. The ADDA has received a great deal of feedback from its members, as well as the general public, about the need for enhanced safety and security in the downtown area. In a recent ADDA community survey about downtown revitalization, safety and security emerged as one of the top three issues. “We are delighted for the opportunity to work with the Ashtabula Police Department to achieve our goal of enhanced security in the downtown area. We want people to view the downtown as a safe and inviting destination,” ADDA President Lynda Annick said.
Ashtabula police officers will be providing the service previously provided by a private security firm in the initial pilot program. The security services will consist of a mixture of foot patrol and car patrol in the downtown area, the parking deck and the two parks. This service is being funded by a variety of downtown merchants, business owners and building owners. Hours for the additional security will be determined by the needs and preferences of the contributors.
Police Chief Robert Stell is pleased with the partnership between the police department and the ADDA. “I am very pleased that the Ashtabula Police Department was asked to provide extra security for the downtown business district. I believe that the additional police presence will be very beneficial toward enhancing the safety and security for the businesses as well as assisting the overall objectives of the ADDA toward improving the downtown area,” he said.
Participants and their customers have been very satisfied with the extra security. “I like the extra security of the officers on the many nights we are open late. Both clients and employees enjoy the added security and kudos to Roberta Madar Pruett for organizing this important effort. It only takes a few people to change the direction of an area and I think the ADDA is doing an outstanding job,” said Jane Haines, owner of Ultimate Appearance Salon.
“Let me also say how pleased I am that we were able to arrange for patrol with our local police department. It will be a great asset to have their presence on the street able to make arrests and issue citations and their visibility will make a difference as well. I also would like to thank the other security organization for the work they did as I thought they did a commendable job,” City Council President J.P. Ducro remarked.
Any other business, building owner or citizen that wishes to contribute to this program may do so by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or calling Roberta Madar-Pruett at 440-998-3706. For more information on the ADDA, visit www.downtownashtabula.com