Posts Tagged ‘Noble Wray’

How to “deal with” Hip Hop

December 22, 2009

I actually was fortunate to receive a pre-Christmas present in the form of Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop, A History of the Hip-Hop Generation. My main motivation for reading it is to find the source of grinding at high school proms.

But Emily Mills also has some topical discussion on local hip-hop:

The Alcohol License Review Committee last week permitted local hip hop promoter Shah of the Midwest Co-op to present a list of “hip hop best practices” that could be implemented to ease fears around town about having venues host that particular genre of show. The list can be viewed here and was created in partnership with alcohol policy coordinator Katherine Plominski “in response to discussions with Police Chief Noble Wray.”

My advice would be require all performers and attendees to wear coats and ties –– but definitely not bow-ties.

On a similar note, later this week I’d like to put up a picture I took of the bar Monday’s. Is anybody out there (very low traffic today, shopping already?) that’s familiar with Monday’s dress code?

MPD releases position on ALRC vote

November 3, 2009

As the “recommendation” that the mayor appoint a student member to the ALRC goes before a Council vote tonight, here is in an email sent to the mayor and the city council, Madison Police Department Chief Noble Wray weighed in on the prospect of adding a student voting member to the ALRC:

“After discussion with Madison Police Department staff to include, but not limited to, Capt. Gloede (ALRC) and Capt. Schauf (Central District), we have concluded that the proposed amendment to Ordinance No. 33.02, which allows for a student voting representative on the ALRC, will not have a direct or indirect impact on public safety. Therefore, the Department’s official position on the proposed ordinance is neutral.”

While I’m sure the MPD regularly submits position statements on issues relevant to their work, I wonder if this statement was requested by council members or the mayor, some of whom wanted to make sure they were doing what was in the interests of public safety – at least according to the police department’s interpretation of it.

It’s hard to see how the police department would have any insight into how a student member would affect bar licenses, unless they assume that the student will vote a certain way, which will lead to more bars etc.

More cops in Madison?

August 18, 2009

That’s the jist of Police Chief Noble Wray’s budget memo to the mayor. Brenda Konkel, with more than a little sarcasm sprinkled about, gives a complete rundown of what the top cop is requesting in the face of a fiscal crisis.

The memo starts out with the required Mayoral butt kissing:
– Thank you for adding 56 of our 438 sworn police officers in the last 6 years.
– Thank you for allowing us to present a budget that takes projected increases in salaries and benefits for 2010 into account.

– 8 – 21 patrol officers are needed. Number one priority is to ensure that patrol staffing levels remain consistent with the recommendations of the 2008 Etico Patrol Staffing Study. i.e. 8 – 21 more officers.

– 5 additional Detectives are needed. Also need Detectives. “Although the Etico Solutions Detective/Investigator staffing study is not yet completed, preliminary data supports the need for five additional Detective positions.”

– Add one officer to each district to provide district-specific crime prevention efforts including analysis of environmental design, as well as a comprehensive measurable problem-solving approach to gangs or other rising concerns.

There’s a lot more documented chez Brenda but you get the point. It has become a point of consensus among commentators in Madison that the police department is not subjected to the same standard of scrutiny when agency spending is reviewed, especially during times of cuts. Without delving too deeply into police policy, I must say I am intrigued by the gang prevention officer initiative, and I think those of us who prefer prevention to enforcement should support the idea. The amount of time dedicated to really examining the root causes of gang participation, including environmental factors, poverty and education, is pathetic. Any big city needs to have officers who are completely dedicated to crime prevention, and that doesn’t just mean more teachers.

However, one commenter did bring up a point that would surely garner some impassioned approval in the student community: the alcohol co-ordinator.

“Cut the Alcohol Policy Coordinator position. It is redundant with the police, Joel Plant, and attorney’s office.” Here’s the thing – because drinking is such a huge issue in a college town of a heavy drinking state, it is almost inevitable that the mayor would appoint somebody to concentrate on alcohol issues. However, what kind of “alcohol policy” can be said to affect drinking behavior in the city? The alcohol license density plan sure won’t, and no other policies, including increased enforcement or fines, will either.

If the objective is to keep more people out of bars, that could happen, but it wouldn’t necessarily lead to better results in the areas of crime or safety. I’m not going to regurgitate the cliché point about unregulated house parties, but I simply want to know what the alcohol coordinator would do differently than the police department in addressing alcohol-related crime. The truth is that people will never decrease their drinking – so it’s really the behavior associated with drinking that needs to be addressed. This is an issue that we will come back to often in the near future.

Brunch Links

July 20, 2009

Uh oh, do you have a case of the Mondays? Unfortunately you can’t shoot me for asking. Either way, we’ve a few good news items today, including a corrections officer robbed of his ID and badge at a bar. Corrections has been on the brain lately, what with sentencing reform, a humane society program that allow inmates to train dogs. Today is another look at the ugliness of our system…

AP: The Wisconsin Supreme Court will decide today whether 16,000 inmates at Milwaukee County Jaily are eligible for compensation for being subjected to crowded and filthy conditions.

Journal-Sentinel: Need a fake ID? Rob a prison guard.

State Journal: Crime or fear of crime? “In some cases, long-time residents of some neighborhoods are afraid of young blacks and Hispanics who are not breaking the law.”

Bill Lueders: “But perhaps the biggest culprits of all are never implicated. I’m talking about ordinary health care consumers. These are the folks who let the current rotten system continue. How? By putting up with it.”

The Daily Page: “Café Monmartre was a second home to Madison musicians.”

The Chief: “Kevin Fischer’s attempt at being clever was so poorly executed that it could be read that he was calling liberals “Jews.”