I’ll have the detail on these reports online by the end of the week, but I like to pass along highlights of what the city has been doing each quarter. It’s always interesting to me how much work that we do that the public doesn’t really pay attention to because they didn’t have problems.
The news is mostly good….
We ended 2016 with the best income tax revenues in more than a decade. Income tax revenues were up $714,000 over 2015. That translates into over $40,000,000 new payroll for the city in 2016.
A lot of that revenue comes from the hard work of our Economic Development staff who is working not only to bring new business to town, but also to assist existing businesses with expansion and work force issues. Economic Development visited 98 existing businesses in 2016 to check in and help with new opportunities.
New Construction continues to strengthen. Building Inspection issued 2,341 permits in 2016, an increase of 983 permits over 2015. The construction value of those permits was $65,434,979 in new property value coming to Middletown.
The Law Department reviewed 172 contracts and prepared 145 pieces of legislation for City Council in 2016. The Victim’s Advocate office assisted 4,781 victims of crime.
Public Works always impresses me. For 2016, our public works crews:
Removed 174 dead trees
Cleaned 46,748 lineal feet of sewer mains
Performed 4,799 lane miles of street sweeping
Utilized 765 tons of asphalt for street repairs
Repaired, replaced or removed 200 street signs
Responded to 8 snow events using 1,417 tons of salt and 1,794 man-hours
Treated 6,708 million gallons of wastewater
Repaired 51 Water Mains; and
Produced 3,112 million gallons of potable water
Middletown Division of Fire saw slight upticks in EMS runs. For the 4th quarter of 2016, MFD responded to 557 calls for fire suppression and 2,342 EMS runs. Fourth quarter EMS runs were up about 200 runs for the quarter over 2015.
Health and Crime stats ended the year poorly. Drugs continue to be a problem throughout Ohio and Middletown has its fair share. The Middletown Health Department reported 72 drug overdose deaths for 2016, including 49 indigent cremations. The City reported an additional 158 new cases of Hepatitis C for the year.
After two years of crime reduction, MPD saw an uptick in crime the final quarter of 2016 that pushed the entire year higher than 2015. Part One serious crimes crept up for the year from 3,375 in 2015 to 3,573 in 2016. Our stepped up drug enforcement efforts netted increases in drug related arrests and charges over 2015 levels.
MPD made 700 total drug arrests in 2016, up from 538 the previous year. MPD booked 340 felony drug charges (up from 245 in 2015) and 396 misdemeanor drug charges (up from 294 in 2015).
If you follow the Middletown Division of Police, you already know that Chief Muterspaw is constantly reviewing crime statistics and working on new tactics to combat crime in the city.
Here’s to a great 2017! Have a great week.