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5-25-18

2017 Florida crime rate drops again




By Tami Stevenson


During a press conference yesterday, at the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, Governor Rick Scott announced that, according to the 2017 Uniform Crime Report, crime is down by six percent from last year and says that is a 47 year low for Florida. Since Scott took office in 2011, the crime rate has dropped 27 percent.


The governor talked about the importance of safe communities and made a commitment for continued funding in those areas. He credited our brave law enforcement and increased funding for the decrease in crime.
Scott said there are three things people care about; they all want a job, want to live in a safe community and they all want a good education system.


“The reality is you’re not going to have a good economy without a low crime rate. If it wasn’t for all the officers around the state there is no way the tourist industry would be so large.  We should have over 120 million tourists this year,” the governor stated.


Scott added that as he talks to companies about moving and expanding in Florida, they want to make sure taxes are low, have a great education system, and they want their employees to live in safe communities.
He encouraged citizens to say thank you to law enforcement when they see them on the street realizing the daily risk they take in todays society in keeping everyone safe.  “Our law enforcement leave their families everyday to protect others. Others they might never meet, not knowing if they will come home that day.” He spoke about the officers who lost their lives in Florida since mid-April, named each one and asked for a moment of silence in honor of those officers and their families.


“We are going to continue in the state to make investments each year to keep our communities safe,” said Scott. This year our budget invested more than $5.2 billion in public safety. Which is more than $300M over last year. This investment includes $22.8M to pay increases for state sworn law enforcement officers, which is in addition to the five percent raise he signed last year. They also funded law enforcement search and rescue during natural disasters, like Floridians experienced last year with hurricanes Irma and Nate; a ten percent raise for Florida’s juvenile detention probation officers and increased funding for prevention programs starting with at risk youth. “Since 2010 the Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) prevention funding has increased by nearly 67 percent.” He said the nice thing about our state is that with our economy continuing to grow we have been able to continue to invest more money in law enforcement.


Scott said today, he is proud to announce that crime in our state is at a 47 year low. He said it is because of all our law enforcement officers across our state. Florida’s crime rate dropped by six percent in 2017. Including a reduction of violent crime by more than three precent. He committed to continue to make investments in this state to keep crime as low as possible.


Most importantly, said Scott, “I want to thank all our law enforcement for putting their lives on the line everyday to keep Florida’s families safe.” Our state’s continual decrease in crime is a reminder of the dedication and hard work of each and every member of our law enforcement community.


“If we continue to respect and honor our law enforcement, if we continue to invest the right way, in law enforcement at the state and local level we are going to see a continued decrease in our inner crime rate.


Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams more than likely echoed Florida sheriffs across the state and nation when he said, in closing, that he and his staff are willing to seek out new ways, new technologies and new approaches to enhance the prevention of crime.