AGENDA MEMORANDUM

 

 

Meeting Date:              September 8, 2008

 

From:                           Edward F. Smyth, Jr., Deputy City Manager

 

Subject:                       Resolution Approving a Memorandum of Agreement with Partners Investing in People (PIP) for the Leesburg Weed and Seed Program

 

 

Staff Recommendation:

Staff recommends approval of the agreement with Partners Investing in People for the Leesburg Weed and Seed program.

 

Analysis:

The Weed and Seed program is a United States Department of Justice program that assists local  governments, neighborhoods, and community-based organizations in developing Weed and Seed strategies under the authority of the Omnibus Crime and Control Safe Streets Act of 1968 (OCCSSA).  The OCCSSA aims to prevent, control, and reduce violent crime, drug abuse, and gang activity in neighborhoods with persistent high levels of serious violent crime and corresponding social problems.  The operative strategy of this initiative incorporates a community-based, comprehensive multi-agency approach to law enforcement, crime prevention, and neighborhood restoration.

This program recognizes that the redeployment of existing community resources can achieve significant and sustainable change in consistently high crime neighborhoods.  The City of Leesburg has partnered with a number of community groups and individuals with the common goal of significantly reducing violent crime and narcotics activity in the following two communities:  

East Service Area – Located within the corporate limits of the City of Leesburg, this area is an irregularly shaped area bounded on the North by Lake Griffin; on the East by Dixie Avenue/Newell Hill Road; on the South by Dixie Avenue; and on the West by Palmetto Street.  (See map attachment for details)

West Service Area – Located within the corporate limits of the City of Leesburg, this area is an irregularly shaped area bounded on the North by the City Limits; on the East by Citrus Boulevard; on the South by West Main Street; and on the West by the City Limits west of County Road 466.  (See map attachment for details)


This initiative will consist of law enforcement operations and strong community engagement to suppress criminal activities, empower residents to build safer neighborhoods, and facilitate the implementation of highly-effective, sustainable restorative strategies.  In addition to these weed activities, the City will also provide education and services, currently being offered citywide, in a specifically targeted manner within the two service areas.

Options:

1.  Approve the resolution;  or

2.  Such alternative action as the Commission may deem appropriate

Fiscal Impact: 

There is no direct fiscal impact above what is already budgeted by the supporting departments as a part of their normal operations.

Submission Date and Time:    9/4/2008 4:46 PM____

 

Department: Administration

Prepared by:  EF Smyth, DCM                     

Attachments:         Yes____   No ______

Advertised:   ____Not Required ______                     

Dates:   _________________________

 

Attorney Review :     Yes_X__  No ____

_______________________________

Revised 6/10/04

 

Reviewed by: Dept. Head ___EFS__

 

Finance  Dept. _______JB_________                                     

                              

Deputy C.M. ________EFS________                                                                         

 

Submitted by:

City Manager ___________________

 

Account No. _________________

 

Project No. ___________________

 

WF No. ______________________

 

Budget  ______________________

 

Available _____________________

 


 

RESOLUTION NO._______________

 

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF LEESBURG, FLORIDA, AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CITY CLERK TO EXECUTE A MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT WITH PARTNERS INVESTING IN PEOPLE, FOR THE LEESBURG WEED AND SEED PROGRAM; AND PROVIDING AND EFFECTIVE DATE.

 

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF LEESBURG, FLORIDA:

 

            THAT the Mayor and City Clerk are hereby authorized to execute an a Memorandum of Agreement  with Partners Investing in People, for the Leesburg Weed and Seed Program, whose address is  715 E. Magnolia St, Leesburg, Florida 34748 .

 

             THAT this resolution shall become effective immediately.

 

PASSED AND ADOPTED by the City Commission of the City of Leesburg, Florida, at a regular meeting held the   8th day of September, 2008

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                            __________________________

                                                                             Mayor

 

ATTEST:

 

 

 

__________________________

City Clerk

 

 


MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT

Weed and Seed Site

Leesburg, Florida

 

WHEREAS, The Weed and Seed program is under the administration of the Community Capacity Development Office (CCDO) in the Office of Justice Programs (OJP), United States Department of Justice.  CCDO assists States, units of local governments, neighborhoods and community-based organizations in developing Weed and Seed strategies under the authority of the Omnibus Crime and Control Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3712 § 103 to 105);  and

WHEREAS, This initiative aims to prevent, control, and reduce violent crime, drug abuse, and gang activity.  Its operative strategy incorporates a community-based, comprehensive multi-agency approach to law enforcement, crime prevention, and neighborhood restoration.  It is designed for neighborhoods with persistent high levels of serious violent crime and corresponding social problems.  Weed and Seed Communities (WSC) are developed in partnership with many local organizations—including the United States Attorney’s Office (USAO)—in order to reduce crime and improve the quality of life in a community.  Partnering entities are required to primarily draw on and redeploy existing public and private resources in crafting problem resolution rather than focusing on limited discretionary Federal grant funds; and

WHEREAS, The strategy recognizes the importance of involving community residents intimately familiar with local community conditions, and community decision-makers who have the responsibility, authority and control of existing community public and private resources. These groups must work together in identifying and solving the problems in their neighborhoods, and by initiating the actions necessary to address related social problems that without proper intervention often lead to violent crime, drug abuse, and gang activity; and

WHEREAS, Recognizing that only with the redeployment of existing community resources can significant and sustainable change be achieved in consistently high crime neighborhoods, the City of Leesburg has embraced the community’s common goal of significantly reducing violent crime and narcotics activity in the following community:  

East Service Area – Located within the corporate limits of the City of Leesburg, this area is an irregularly shaped area bounded on the North by Lake Griffin; on the East by Dixie Avenue/Newell Hill Road; on the South by Dixie Avenue; and on the West by Palmetto Street.  (See map attachment for details.)

West Service Area – Located within the corporate limits of the City of Leesburg, this area is an irregularly shaped area bounded on the North by the City Limits; on the East by Citrus Boulevard; on the South by West Main Street; and on the West by the City Limits west of County Road 466.  (See map attachment for details.)

WHEREAS, This initiative will consist of law enforcement operations and strong community engagement to suppress criminal activities, empower residents to build safer neighborhoods and facilitate the implementation of highly-effective, sustainable restorative strategies.


GENERAL UNDERSTANDINGS, AGREEMENTS AND REQUIREMENTS

A.     The Steering Committee, as the governing body of the Weed and Seed program organization, will meet at a set date and time to be established by the members, in accordance with the PIP Policies & Procedures.

B.     The parties will be responsible for the creation and execution of their operations in the target areas.

C.     All parties will work to ensure that programs initially developed by the Steering Committee will be operationally transferred and integrated into existing public or private organizations as soon as possible - throughout the life of the project – in order to achieve sustainability and enable the Steering Committee to maintain its design, planning and development functions.

D.     Due to investigative sensitivities, specific and detailed information relative to law enforcement operations, including individual suspects and targets, will generally not be shared outside of the law enforcement partnership. 

E.      The City of Leesburg will submit routine progress reports to the Chairperson of the Steering Committee as required, to comply with the initiative’s overall reporting requirements as well as to capture information for evaluation purposes.   

SPECIFIC UNDERSTANDINGS, AGREEMENTS AND REQUIREMENTS

WEED EFFORTS

 

 Law Enforcement

The Leesburg Police Department agrees to provide the following:

1.      Provide police officers for joint operations with the U. S. Drug enforcement  Agency, Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, the U.S. Marshall’s Officer, the U. S. Attorney’s Office, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, and other local law enforcement agencies in the Weed and Seed areas;

2.      Proactively enforce code violations and minimum housing standards;

3.      Proactively enforce litter and illegal dumping laws;

4.      Assign vice officers to target/arrest drug dealers and users on a priority basis;

5.      Assign Community Services Officer to develop and implement crime prevention programs;

6.      Give priority to Weed and Seed area in the deployment and utilization of K-9 teams to support drug interdiction;

7.      Use crime analysis to examine crime trends in the Weed and Seed site;

8.      Assign officers to work and support other operations the in Weed and Seed site.


Community Policing

The Leesburg Police Department agrees to provide the following:

The Leesburg Police Department is committed to community policing strategies within the Weed and Seed site and agrees to work vigilantly with Lake County Sheriff's Office and other organizations to curb truancy and be an active part of mentoring programs;

1.      Recruit qualified applicants within the proposed site;

2.      Participate in neighborhood cleanups, cookouts, meetings and sporting events;

3.      Continue the citizens police academy initiative;

4.      Promote crime watch initiatives and educating crime prevention (CEPTED);

5.      Educate business owners about crime prevention, improve quality of life issues that contribute to neighborhood decay (repair pot holes, trim over grown trees,  prompt removal of bulk trash, ect.), and

6.      Support the neighborhood accountability board which  diverts youth from being formally charged with a crime, while still holding them accountable for their actions; and

7.      Continue the "adopt an apartment complex" project (officers assigned to multi-housing units as liaisons to managers).

SEED EFFORTS

Neighborhood Restoration

The City of Leesburg agrees to provide:

1.      Educate the public about illegal dumping and the hazards it causes to the                  environment;

2.      Participate in neighborhood cleanups;

3.      Participate in community meetings and provide feedback about                                 minimum housing standards; and

4.      Educate the public about code enforcement, legal process, and the                           responsibilities of property owners.

5.      Provide first-time home buyer education, re-establish credit, down                       payment assistance,  mortgage approvals, and maintain partnerships with local furniture retail companies to  donate one room of furniture  to a qualified buyer per quarter; and

6.      Remodel Kristen Court Villas for resale as low income homes, formerly a high crime area within the target area.

SAFE HAVEN

1.      The City of Leesburg further supports this strategy by creating a Safe Haven at 1851 Griffin Rd. Leesburg, which is within the proposed Weed and Seed site.  The location is a new city owned gymnasium that was completed in 2008.  This recreational facility is configured for both internal and external sporting activities with conference rooms for meetings and other events.

2.      The City of Leesburg will offer recreational activities such as youth league sports and summer camp programs.

REVIEW:  

This agreement will be reviewed annually to ensure adequate identification of support requirements.  Additional reviews may take place when changing conditions or circumstances require substantial changes or development of a new agreement.  Minor changes may be made at any time by correcting the existing document or attaching a memorandum to the basic document.  Changes must be coordinated and initialed by a representative of both parties.

AMENDMENT, MODIFICATION AND TERMINATION:  

This MOA may be amended or modified only by written, mutual agreement of the parties.  Either party may terminate this MOA by providing written notice to the other party.  The termination shall be effective upon the sixtieth calendar day following notice, unless a later date is set forth. 

EFFECTIVE DATE

This MOA is effective upon adoption by the City Commission (Resolution Attached) and is in effect until the project end date, or until otherwise modified.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the CITY has executed this Agreement this ___ day of _______, 2008, and the COMMITTEE has executed this Agreement this ___day of  _________, 2008.

 

CITY OF LEESBURG

PIP COMMITTEE

By:

By:

Name:

 

Name

 

Mayor

Chair

Attest:

Attest

 

 

City Clerk

Secretary

City Legal Review

 

 

 

City Attorney