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Commission Capsule - April 3, 2012

Criminal Justice Survey
The Board received as information the Charlotte-Mecklenburg 2012 Criminal Justice System Survey Final Report. The report is based on findings of a random telephone survey of 501 adults residents in Mecklenburg County conducted in January and February of this year. Executive Summary bullet points:

  • The majority of respondents believe crime is a problem in Mecklenburg County
  • More respondents choose prevention, enforcement and rehabilitation over incarceration as a way to deal with crime
  • The majority of respondents are positive toward the use if citations rather than arrest for low-level, non-violent crimes.
  • A strong majority of respondents support diversion to a location for care and services rather than arrest or citation for people who commit low-level crimes and are homeless or mentally ill.
  • Significantly more respondents believe Mecklenburg Courts are about right at setting release conditions for defendants awaiting trial, than believe they are too lenient or too harsh.
The survey was commissioned by Mecklenburg County Criminal Justice Services at a cost of $23,000.

Fire Service Districts
The Board held a public hearing and then voted to approve creation of five Fire Protection Service Districts in Mecklenburg County as follows: Four Town ETJ service districts - one each for the ETJs of Cornelius, Davidson, Huntersville and Mint Hill. A fifth service district for the City of Charlotte’s ETJ and the small area south of Pineville into which Pineville could exercise its ETJ rights, but has not done so (to be called City of Charlotte ETJ Fire District). These districts are being created to fund the cost of providing fire protection service to all properties in the service district, with the cost paid for by all service district property owners through the service district property tax. The tax to finance fire protection in these service districts will be effective July 1, 2012.

Nursing Home and Adult Day Care Annual Report
The Board received the annual report of the Mecklenburg County Nursing Home Community Advisory Committee & Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee. The report indicates the biggest challenge facing the County is the lack of active members on the two committees. The Adult Care Home Committee has 39 member positions but only 14 actual members and even fewer who are active in facility site surveys. The report sites commitments to jobs and family and other community involvement as a reason for low attendance at meetings and facility visits. Mecklenburg County does not reimburse committee members for site visits. That is stated as another reason committee members do not make facility visits. The committees will seek to increase the number of active volunteers through outreach efforts in the coming year.

2012 Legislative Agenda
The Board agreed to ask the local Legislative Delegation to seek action in the General Assembly on the following issues:
   1. Seek legislation that allows for the electronic transmittal of commitment orders
       between law enforcement and the courts.
   2. Clarify S.L. 2010-158 to insure that secondary PSAPs that have inter-local
       agreements with Primary PSAPs are eligible for 911 funds and that decisions made
       by the 911 board are subject to the Administrative Procedures Act.
   3. Continue supporting the following guiding principles for state and federal issues:
     • Support legislation that grants flexibility to Counties
     • Oppose legislation that restricts County authority
     • Support legislation that provides funding to counties and oppose legislation that 
        cuts county funding
     • Oppose unfunded mandates
   4. Ask the General Assembly to study the issue of allowing  for the expunction of
       misdemeanors from an individual’s criminal record.
   5. Seek legislation to allow Mecklenburg County Commissioners to attend meetings
       remotely via electronic device.

Proclamations and Awards Policy
The Board approved changes to the Proclamations and Awards policy. These are the guidelines for how and when the Board will recognize people and events during regular Board meetings. Changes include:

  • Proclamations to be considered by the Board will be placed on the Board’s Regular meeting agenda under Consent, unless two-thirds of the Board votes during the Informal Session to place it under the Awards/Recognition section of the agenda.
  • Recognition of staff, advisory board chairs, and Order of the Hornet recipients will occur at a meeting of the Board’s discretion.
  • Resolutions that are intended primarily to raise awareness or otherwise acknowledge an event, activity, date or other similar information shall be considered to be Proclamations for purposes of this policy and therefore shall be subject to and managed by this policy on Proclamations and Awards.

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