Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Vaughn Seeks Panel to Monitor Police

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Vaughn Seeks Panel to Monitor Police

Article excerpt

NEPTUNE BEACH -- A police advisory committee that would report

to the City Council and a "suggestion-box" system to funnel

citizen comments directly to the board may be in the city's

future.

Those suggestions and one to place officers' names on police

cars came at the end of a sometimes stinging discussion about

city administrative issues, from the handling of complaints and

tracking of projects to animal-control problems.

Newly elected Mayor George Vaughn said a police advisory

committee set up by Police Chief William Brandt is not enough.

Vaughn wants a committee established that will report to the

council.

"I would seriously like the council doing that so we have more

control," he said. Vaughn said he has not received reports from

the chief's panel on issues that are being addressed.

"I want to see some records of a meeting," Vaughn told City

Manager Richard Linn. "I want to see some issues they have dealt

with."

Brandt was not at the meeting, but said earlier that he will

respond to the council through Linn's office.

The discussion was initiated by Vice Mayor Thomas Tankersley,

in keeping with his promise to set priorities for a newly

reconfigured council. Three new members were elected to the

five-member board last month.

Tankersley asked for better accounting of things like following

up on citizen complaints.

"I'm not saying we have major problems here, but I would like

to see more customer service," he said.

Linn defended his administration, saying many issues were

stalled by the previous council and that systems for tracking

complaints are in place. He said an amended interlocal agreement

with Jacksonville and a review of city land-use regulations had

been bogged down by politics or improper handling. …

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