Wildwood Security Steps Need to be Completed
Recent political-related discourse in the nation prompted one city councilmember to review local security measures, and she found a few items lacking at city hall.
U.S. flags, including local ones such as at Metro West Fire Protection District's headquarters in Wildwood, are flying at half-staff until sunset on Jan. 14 out of respect for the victims of the acts of violence on Saturday in Tucson, AZ, per a proclamation from President Barack Obama.
The shooting that occurred in an Arizona grocery store prompted Wildwood city councilwoman Michele Bauer (Ward 8) to check what security measures were in place at Wildwood City Hall. What she discovered and revealed to other councilmembers and staffers Monday evening at a council meeting were a few surprises.
"Unfortunately, it's not a matter of if, but when, some threat may occur," said Bauer.
Bauer said she made a few phone calls to local authorities on Monday to ask what steps were in place to provide a secure government environment and learned that a resolution passed by councilmembers in 2009 outlined five security measures to be taken. The steps included:
- Installing new security cameras
- Placing privacy film on city hall windows
- Installing a panic button
- Creating a firm, exterior barrier
- Installing "ballistic panels," which are bullet-proof walls to be placed in front of the dais to provide a layer of protection should something dangerous break out in the council meeting room
The surprise was that only two of the five steps had been executed, even though the approval and $15,000 worth of funding had been put in place more than a year ago, Bauer said.
The two items taken care of were the security cameras and windows.
She said she also believed training would be helpful for preparedness in the area of security.
"It's also not too early to review what security measures are being established for the new city hall building as well," she said.