Mar. 6, 2013 PLYMOUTH EAGLE.
“Public safety is one of the critical elements of any community.”
Canton Township has been rated as the 33rd safest of 432 municipalities with a population of more than 75,000 residents in the entire nation.
The ranking was completed by CQ Press, which used a multi-step evaluation process using statistics from the 2011 Crime Report of the FBI. Crime rates for murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary and motor vehicle theft are plugged into a formula that measures how each city compares to the national average in each given category. Canton was the highest ranking Michigan community, followed by Sterling Heights coming in at 34th, and Troy at 36th.
Public Safety Director Todd L. Mutchler credited the low crime rate to several factors. “Our consistently low crime rate can be partially attributed to our proactive method of policing, and our ongoing partnerships within the community,” said Mutchler. “Our police department continues to receive a high level of sup- port from the community and its elected officials,” he added.
That support was evident during a recent township board meeting when Supervisor Phil LaJoy noted that the township is committed to providing the best possible public safety service to residents.
“Public safety is one of the critical elements of any community,” LaJoy said. “We have com- mitted to the people to keep our service levels up. Our whole thing is to keep Canton vibrant and keep it moving forward. One of the basic elements to keep it that way is public safety. We want to have as safe a community as we can possibly have, and we need to equip our people to do that.”
His comments came as part of the discussion of the purchase of vehicles for the public safety department.
In addition to the two new ambulances recently delivered to the Canton Township Fire Department, the trustees agreed to spend another $258,014 for public safety vehicle
The new ambulances will be used by the six, two-man squads based at three fire stations who are on duty 24 hours a day in Canton. All the Canton firefighters are paramedics and all are Advanced Life Support Certified, according to Fire Chief Josh Meier.
The recently delivered new ambulances are built on a heavy-duty chassis, reducing maintenance costs and service down-time of the units, he said.
“In an effort to reduce costs, we took advantage of a trade-in program offered through the vendor, applying our credit received for the old ambulances toward the new purchases,” said Meier. “In addition, we also participated in a consolidated (group) purchase with Livonia and Northville Township, therefore further bringing down the price of the new squads.”
Last year firefighter/paramedics responded to 5,472 medical calls that resulted in more than 3,500 transports to area hospitals. “Our calls for medical service continue to rise, and we are fortunate to be able to pro- vide top-notch advanced life support services to the residents and visitors of our com- munity.,” Meier said.
The board of trustees also agreed unanimously to purchase four new Ford Taurus police patrol vehicles and one crime-scene Ford Explorer at a cost of $120,991; two canine officer Chevy Tahoes for a total of $53,844; two GMC trucks for the public works division for $57,152, replacing vehicles the township has used for 18 years and another Ford Explorer for $26,054 for the use of the fire chief, replacing an older vehicle that has 133,500 miles. That car will now be used by the deputy fire chief.
LaJoy said that the township has benefited from a long-range plan to replace public safety vehicles other communities struggle to keep up with deteriorating equipment. The vehicles being replaced have between 120,000 to 143,000 miles.
The purchases were approved unanimously by the board of trustees.
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