Solutions for Riverview neighborhood

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 15, 2006

To the Editor:

Several weeks ago I wrote a letter to the editor thanking the Mayor and his staff for attending a Riverview neighborhood meeting.

In that letter I made the statement that as citizens of Selma we needed to provide solutions to problems not just state the problems. So here are some problems and my ideas for solutions.

During this neighborhood meeting the police chief and the head of Selma’s three member drug team spoke. Their statements to the crowd were to expect big things in the next couple of weeks.

With summer approaching, I was expecting big things, but as of this date I have seen very little.

In the Riverview district we do have a problem with drugs and alcohol and I have a couple of solutions.

One would be to have a visible police presence in the neighborhood.

If I can go by a house (just drive down Selma Avenue) and see that there are at least 25 to 30 empty beer boxes, the large hold a lot of cans of beer type boxes, in the outgoing trash pile in front of a single family house and these empty cases are in the trash on a continual basis, I would think that I may want to put some sort of watch on the house to see if they may be selling liquor without a license or to minors or violating some other City, County, or State ordinance or law.

Yes someone could be having a party or large family gathering but if this many beer containers are in the trash every week, it may be something our law enforcement personnel may want to check out.

I understand that to some people alcohol is not a big deal, but I would ask the family members of someone suffering from alcohol issues if they agree.

And I am sorry – breaking the law is breaking the law.

As far as the drug problems in our neighborhood, it appears to me that if a few police patrols were in our neighborhood during the peak traffic period let’s say between about 7 p.m. to midnight, and that if these officers made a few routine traffic stops for let say speeding, loud music, no license tag on the vehicle, etc. that this would possibly net a few drug and maybe firearm violators.

The solutions outlined above may require hiring more police officers and for those officers to be out in all our neighborhoods.

This brings up another possible solution to the aforementioned problems. Why don’t we tax the shot and drug houses?

Let’s check and see if they have a business license and are charging sales tax.

The revenue generated from these licenses and sales taxes may allow for the hiring of more police officers or possibly next year’s summer youth employment program.

Shirley Ross