In the City Council packet for Tuesday's Council meeting is the December 2008 Report of the Woodstock Police Department. This report contains not only the December statistics, but also the statistics for the year. Below are 12-month 2008 statistics, compared to 2007.
Traffic arrests from accidents were 22.3%.
DUI arrests were down 40.5%.
Driving while suspended arrests were down 18.9%.
Insurance violation arrests were down 14.2%.
"Other" traffic arrests were down 1.6%.
In 2008 there were 1,058 tickets issued for accidents, DUIs, driving while suspended and insurance violations, and there were 3,551 tickets for "other" traffic violations. In other words, 77% of the traffic tickets issued in 2008 were for "other" traffic violations.
More breakdown is needed from the Woodstock Police Department to reveal the major violations being ticketed by officers. To lump 77% of the tickets into "Other" could raise questions about where officers are focusing their efforts.
Calls for service were down 3%.
Miles patrolled were down 7.8%.
Total written reports were down 10.8%.
Outside agency assists were down 7.6%.
Fire/rescue calls were down 0.6%.
The Woodstock Police Department responded to 3,578 fire/rescue calls in 2008. Is a review needed to ascertain whether the police needed to respond to most of those calls? It would be interesting to know how many were fire calls and how many were rescue calls. If a person falls down the stairs or has a heart attack or gets dizzy, are the police needed, unless there is a traffic control need?
But get this number: TAVERN CHECKS WERE UP 89.1%. What was the reason for the huge increase in tavern checks? Do these checks include 3 Brothers, Angelo's, Vaughan's, Courthouse Grill and the other restaurants' serving alcohol? Or just the "taverns"?
It would be interesting to see the number of tavern checks, listed by establishment. I wonder whether the Liquor Commission receives such a report.
Do you know that sleepy little Woodstock collected $35,766 in parking fines in 2008? That's $687/week. Where are all these violations? (In 2007 $63,615 was collected in parking fines.) In 2007 there were 5,438 parking tickets issued, compared with 3,955 tickets issued in 2008.(Nmber of parking tickets dropped 1,483 (27.3%), and collected fines dropped $27,849 (43.8%).
The value of property stolen in Woodstock in 2008 was $365,142.
The value of property vandalized in Woodstock in 2008 was $128,129.
These are figures that never reach the public. They are available to the public, if you care to go to the Library and reach the packet prepared for the City Council. Or you can go to City Hall and read the packet there. But you'll never hear these number talking about elsewhere.
What do these numbers mean to you?