P.A.C.T. - Police And Citizens Together
What is it? - P.A.C.T. is a community based action program designed not only by the City of Suwanee Police, but the community to compliment the “Neighborhood Watch” program. P.A.C.T. encourages the participation of the citizens in maintaining the quality of life within their own community. The City of Suwanee P.A.C.T initiative is a focus on quality of life within the communities, and how the communities can be proactive rather than reactive. Through P.A.C.T., a specific officer is assigned as a liaison to each of the City's neighborhoods or subdivisions. The officer/liaison will work with residents on quality-of-life issues such as speeding, assist residents in taking measures to prevent crimes, and facilitate three community meetings each year. In addition, members of the community will also work with the PACT officer to help communicate the concerns of the community to the city.
Even though the police patrol our community, they can not know the concerns of each and every homeowner. Through the assistance of the community PACT liaisons, we can bring these concerns to the attention of the city.
Why would I want to participate in P.A.C.T.? - By participating in the P.A.C.T. program, you show community members that you have pride in our community and our city, and that in turn will encourage others to take pride in their own neighborhood community. The P.A.C.T. program will also mean less work for all of us.
Chattahoochee Run / Point PACT Officer:
Officer Elias Casanas - (770) 945-5662
Other Programs and Achievements
- ADVANCE (Avoiding Drugs Violence And Negative Choices Early) instructor for Suwanee elementary. ADVANCE is Gwinnett's version of DARE. When the new Suwanee elementary school opens next year, he hopes to instruct there as well.
- Co-founder of a successful mentor program called 'COPS' (Caring Officers Providing Support). 12 Officers are currently in this Suwanee Elementary program. An Officer meets with a selected 5th grade student for 30 minutes once a week for 3 months. The topic of discussion is everything from academics to coping skills.
- Police Dept's liaison for Special Olympics. The Suwanee Police Department was 3rd in the state for funds raised last year. They beat out 99 other participating law enforcement agencies (including: MARTA, DeKalb, Atlanta, GSP, Macon, and Cobb). This is very impressive if you consider Suwanee only has 28 Officers.
- · The City of Suwanee has awarded Officer Stewart 4 awards since his arrival in 2000.
- The Suwanee STAR, which is the highest award the City presents, for the COPS mentor program.
- 3 merit awards for catching a burglar in progress, assisting in catching "entering auto" subjects, and for his work with community service.
Please join me in thanking Officer Stewart for his Dedication to Service for us and our community
Chattahoochee Run / Point PACT Liaisons:
Please contact any member of the HOA Board for additional information
Blue Form - This form is a basically a standard city service request form. This form can be used to report your concerns with or questions about anything related to the city or our neighborhood. For example:
- · Pot holes in the streets
- · Drivers speeding through the neighborhood
- · Street lights that are out
- · Code Enforcement
- · Planning & Development
- · and much more
Not every problem will be corrected by submitting this form but you can be guaranteed that every form submitted will receive a response. If the problem submitted goes beyond the scope of the form, your response will contain information on who the proper contacts should be.
To get a copy of this form, please contact any of the PACT liaisons listed above and one will be delivered right to your mailbox. You do not necessarily need one of these forms to submit a problem or question. If you contact one of the liaisons with the details, they will take care of getting it submitted for you and ensure that you get a response.
After receiving several complaints about drivers speeding and cutting through the neighborhood to avoid the light at PIB & McGinnis Ferry, the police started at traffic study within the neighborhood and found that our complaints are indeed valid. Part of the traffic study included at speed survey. The results of this survey showed that 85% of traffic was traveling at 33mph and 5% was traveling at speeds greater than 36mph.
Unfortunately, according to Georgia law the police are unable to setup laser speed detection on Chattahoochee Run Drive between Grand Vista Approach and McGinnis Ferry for the following reasons:
- The grade of the road between Grand Vista Approach and River View Run is 10% and Georgis law states that laser can not be used of grades larger then 7.5 %.
- There is no clear line of site. Georgia law states that a line of site greater than 500 feet is required.
However, they have been actively patrolling our neighborhood from 6:00am to 9:00am every morning. In the few weeks they have been watching the traffic, the have written over 20 citations and only 4 of them were to residents of our neighborhood.
The police are very much aware of the problem with the intersection at Mcginnis Ferry & P'tree Ind. Blvd. as well the amount of traffic on McGinnis Ferry and the amount of traffic at every other intersection within the city of Suwanee. The plain fact is that they are not city engineers or planners and our city is getting larger every month. They best they can do is try to control the flow of traffic on the streets in order to keep everyone safe.
It was suggested that closing off the entrance at McGinnis Ferry would help stop drivers from speeding and cutting through the neighborhood. The City states that this is simply not an option due to funding. As another option, residents can contact the D.O.T to inquire about having speed breakers installed. This would involve a more lengthly detailed traffic study. Some of the rquirements are:
- · Speed must be (on average) 11mph or higher
- · Requires 70% of homeowners affected by speed breakers to vote in.
- · Homeowners will receive a $12 increase in their yearly property taxes to pay for maintanence of the breakers and signs
Contrary to popular belief, the police do not drive through the neighborhood looking for illegally parked vehicles. Generally, officers respond to parking issues mainly due to neighbor complaints. Citations are written solely at the officers desctretion. This does not mean that every time a car is parked illegally the officer will knock on you door and ask you to move your car. Here is a list of of violations that you should expect to receive a citation for. If you don't, consider yourself lucky and remember you may not be the next time.
- · Parked against the flow of traffic - Right side (passenger) wheels should be within 12 inches of the curb.
- · Blocking another homeowners driveway
- · Parked within 15 feet of a fire hydrant
- · Parked within 20 feet of an intersection
- · Parked within 30 feet of a stop or yeild sign
City of Suwanee Programs: Free to all residents of Suwanee. Call (770) 945-4607 (ext. 327) for more information
- PRIDE (Parents Reducing Incidents of Driver Error) is a program, offered in cooperation with the University of Georgia Traffic Injury Prevention Institute, designed to help reduce the high number of crashes, injuries, and deaths involving teenage drivers. The two-hour course, which addresses driving attitudes and teen behavior, is for teenagers and their parents.
- Citizens Police Academy is a seven-week, hands-on program, residents receive limited police training and a deeper understanding of the risks and responsibilities of police officers. This program is offered once or twice each year, with classes at City Hall. Classes are held on Tuesday evenings. Attendees will participate in ride alongs and will learn several tactics used by officers in their daily routine.
- Child Safety Seat Checks - Several Suwanee officers have received training as child safety technicians. They are certified in the proper installation and use of child car seats. You may contact Sgt. Elias Casanas or Sgt. Cass Mooney at the number above or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to request an inspection of your child safety seats.
- Explorers - Youth ages 14-20 can explore a career in law enforcement while assisting the community through the Suwanee Police Department's Explorers program. Suwanee Explorers meet twice each month and help out at various City events, directing traffic, guiding parking, and helping children find their "lost" parents. They also practice traffic stops, building searches, occasionally ride along with Suwanee officers on patrol, and provide child safety prints.
- Tours - If you're interested seeing the Suwanee police station and it's facilities, they would be more than happy to provide you or your group a tour. Contact them at the number above for more info.
Hopefully those of you who attended the meeting found it to be beneficial and that it answered the questions or concerns you may have had. Please pass the word along to your neighbors and encourage them to attend our next meeting. As long as it concerns our neighborhood or something within the City of Suwanee, there is no topic to large or small to be discussed during these meetings.
We hope you will find the information contained within this web site useful and informative. If there is something that you feel should be added or have any questions, please feel free to contact the webmaster with your comments or suggestions. If you have a concern or police matter that you think needs to be handled before then next meeting, please contact Officer Casanas. He will contact you directly to discuss your issues.