0

Commission sets priorities during retreat

Gordon Maynard, left, of the Carl Vinson Institute is facilitating today's Albany City Commission retreat being conducted at an Albany Fire Department Facility. Also picture from left are Commissioners Tommie Postell and Jon Howard and Albany City Attorney Nathan Davis.

Gordon Maynard, left, of the Carl Vinson Institute is facilitating today's Albany City Commission retreat being conducted at an Albany Fire Department Facility. Also picture from left are Commissioners Tommie Postell and Jon Howard and Albany City Attorney Nathan Davis.

ALBANY, Ga. -- Public safety remains the Albany City Commission's top priority for 2011, following its retreat Monday at the Albany Fire Department's multi-use training facility.

Coming on the heels of one of the city's bloodiest weekends in recent memory, the designation reaffirms the body's commitment to crime prevention and reduction, Albany Mayor Willie Adams said.

"The No. 1 issue in terms of quality of life is safety and how safe people feel," Adams said. "We've been fortunate to have crime dip in recent months, but we have to keep our focus."

During the retreat -- a meeting of the board in a more informal setting -- commissioners said they would like to see their staff continue to work to fill vacancies with the Albany Police Department and agreed to continue using technology to help serve as a "force multiplier" to increase efficiency and extend the department's reach.

Over the weekend, two people were murdered in the city in separate incidents. Both suspects were arrested within 48 hours of the crimes, police officials say.

After public safety, the commission decided to make economic development and job creation its second priority, followed by blighted property, and water and sewer infrastructure.

The commission discussed a wide range of topics, from ways to help it perform as a more efficient legislative body to expectations from its city manager.