The following issues are top priority to me:
Reckless driving has gotten out of control over the past several years in District 5 and Milwaukee. According to Wisconsin Department of Transportation data, Milwaukee's five deadliest roads since 2017 are either routed through District 5 or very close to District 5. They are Fond du Lac Avenue (1st deadliest), Capitol Drive (2nd deadliest), Appleton Avenue (3rd deadliest), and Silver Spring Drive (4th deadliest). Among the biggest issues are speed and illegal use of parking lanes to pass on the right. I will push hard for the Department of Public Works to install many bump-outs that will prevent such reckless behavior. Another major issue is drivers blowing through red lights. I’d like our traffic engineers to prioritize safety in establishing red clearance intervals – increased time before traffic lights turn green after cross road traffic lights have turned red. Finally, we are seeing too many speeding vehicles heading through residential streets. I’d like to increase the amount of speed bumps we have in these areas and push to have the speed bumps as high as possible.
Vehicle Theft & Auto Break-ins
In 2021 Milwaukee had 10,477 vehicle thefts, which was up from 4,507 in 2020 — a 132% increase. Milwaukee nearly outpaced Chicago in vehicle thefts in 2021, a city with over 2 million more residents than Milwaukee has. Break-ins have also been an issue throughout the District as they have throughout Milwaukee. I’d like to push for more anti-theft devices for residents, free of charge. In the past, “clubs” (steering wheel locks) have been distributed, but there have been increasing reports of them being cut off of vehicles throughout the city. I would like to provide other anti-theft devices that may be more effective such as wheel/brake pedal locks, security tire clamps, GPS trackers & alarm systems. I’d also like to make it possible for all District 5 residents to have access to free camera doorbells and spot lights.
Problem Properties / Absentee Landlords
Foreclosures have been on the rise in the Milwaukee area over the past 2-3 years. When properties go into foreclosure, they can end up in the hands of property management companies or investors that are absentee. Some of these investors and property management companies are great. Some of them are less discerning and will rent anyone with a pulse who will pay rent on time, and have no rules or behavioral expectations for their tenants. Living styles that have no consideration for others will no longer be tolerated. This situation is detrimental to the neighborhood and I’ll push for the city of Milwaukee Ordinances (from those addressing property upkeep such as grass, snow clearing, and litter, to disturbances to more severe health and safety issues) to be enforced on a more consistent basis, stiff penalties for tenants and property owners alike.
Over the past several years – the job as a Police Officer has become less and less appealing. The easy answer to a lot of the crime in the area is: we need more policing and more officers on our streets. First, that is very true – but I feel that the first step would be to make the job more appealing. Without appeal, there simply are not enough applicants to increase the presence. The first step of making the job more appealing would have to be a collaboration between the Milwaukee Police Department, Milwaukee citizens and local government. The collaboration must include all three sides taking ownership of faults (each has a part in Milwaukee’s shortfalls) – and fully committing to internally holding their peers accountable. Once the wheels are in motion of the job becoming more appealing – there will be more interest which will result in more applicants. Second, how will the City of Milwaukee afford these additional needed officers? The reduction in the budget did not help things. I will continue to push for 1% of the current sales tax to be put into a fund and shared across the state equally – providing an abundance of additional funds to pay for such things. Lastly – I will urge and continue to push for the City of Milwaukee and the State of Wisconsin to proactively continue to seek and generate new forms of revenue.
Crime Consequences & Penalties
Simply put – criminals need to face stiffer consequences & penalties for the crimes they commit. The slap of the hand has to end, especially for repeat offenders. Most importantly – while in custody – I’d like to collaborate with lots of different people to find ways to help these individuals get on the right track in their life. We have to care more about being proactive in helping these individuals help themselves, so we aren't seeing them continuously commit these crimes. We can’t continue to miss opportunities to REALLY hold them accountable for their actions along with the opportunity to help them. Those two key opportunities have been missed for far too long.
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