Maintaining a high quality of life in any community depends on many factors. These include good schools, a strong economic base, continued maintenance of streets and parks, a wise city council and involved residents.
One of the best pieces of news I’ve seen recently is that crime was down 17 percent in Rohnert Park in 2016, back to levels near our historic lows in 2013 and 2014. While our dedicated Public Safety staff deserve much of the credit, the city can’t do it alone. We residents help keep our community safe by reporting suspicious behavior, sharing video from home or business systems and taking care of our cars and homes by keeping doors and windows locked.
In Rohnert Park, we pride ourselves on community-oriented policing, where our officers are visible in the community by visiting schools and businesses and attending many events. In recent months we’ve held community meetings focused on public safety, including meeting with the businesses on the west side of Highway 101 and hosting 40 residents from the north side of the city at a meeting in January.
We are going to continue this outreach. I invite you to keep an eye out for an announcements of a meeting this spring that will focus on our south side neighborhoods where you can hear about our efforts and learn how you can help. One of the best ways to keep informed is to subscribe to Nixle, a service that sends texts on important public safety information. You can register at www.nixle.com.
I’m also pleased that the city recently held a ceremony to welcome eight new staff in Public Safety, including four who attended Rancho Cotate High School. Public Safety Officers Matt and Sean Huot, Dispatcher Dana Benavides and Community Services Officer Joel Auerbach have all decided to establish their careers in our city – another example of true community-oriented policing.
• Summertime hiring: We also have a way for our teens and young adults to participate in our community with great summer jobs, and it’s not too early to apply. Our Community Services Department is searching for great individuals to join our team of recreation professionals this summer. If you or somebody you know is looking for a job during the summer months, please visit the Human Resources page on the City of Rohnert Park’s website, www.rpcity.org. We will be hiring and training for openings ranging from day camp leaders to lifeguards and swim instructors. Summer volunteer opportunities are also available for those under the age of 16 through our Leader In Training program. If you have any questions, feel free to give our Community Services Department a call at 588-3456. Make this summer a great one!
• Community survey: Last year we completed a survey of our residents, where more than 1,000 participated by sharing your opinions about the quality of City services and what you would like to see in our community. We’ve been using this input to help set our priorities, such as starting work this summer to improve the northern stretch of Snyder Lane from Keiser to G Section.
The feedback from the survey was so helpful that we’re going to do it again. To participate, please visit www.rpcity.org/survey. Once we have the results in, I’ll share what we hear from our residents in a future column.
Darrin Jenkins is the Rohnert Park City Manager.