Thursday, January 24, 2002

Computers for cops Mason priority

City manager outlines new programs for 2002

By Earnest Winston
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MASON — Equipping patrol cars with computers is a priority for city officials in 2002, City Manager Scot Lahrmer said Wednesday during his State of the City address.

        “This will allow officers to complete their reports in the field when the incident is still fresh in their minds,” Mr. Lahrmer told more than 100 public officials, business owners and residents during the inaugural event.

        “Additionally, it will increase the presence of officers in the community.”

        He said the police department is examining linking the in-car computers via cell phones to the Warren County police databank, allowing officers access to a person's police record in the county.

        He did not estimate how much the projects would cost.

        Also, the city manager used the speech to announce that Assistant City Engineer David Riggs will become the new public works superintendent. Kurt Seiler, the city's subdivision engineer, will fill the vacancy left by Mr. Riggs.

        Mr. Lahrmer touched on other areas during his speech at the Manor House, including:

        • Mason bought 125 acres of parkland on U.S. 42 in 2001.

        • There was nearly $160 million in new and expanded business investment in the city during 2000 and 2001.

        • In 2001, the top 15 businesses in Mason generated more than $5.3 million in earnings-tax revenues, which account for 60 percent of general-fund revenues.

        • This year, the city will begin reconstructing sewer lines along U.S. 42, primarily benefiting the southwest side of the city — from Thriftway north to the Fireside area.

        Steve Mechler, who moved his family to Mason about a year ago, said he wanted to know more about the city's plan to revitalize downtown.

        “I don't want it to turn into a ghost town,” he said.

        The downtown revitalization plan is in the comprehensive study phase.


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