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PV Monthly Meeting Notes – August 12th 2021

Below are the notes from Project VISION’s monthly meeting held on August 12th, 2021. To download a document file of these notes, click here. 35 people attended this meeting in-person at the Calvary Bible Church. 28 attendees joined for the online screening via Zoom.

 

  • Welcome

    • PV Chair – Mark Stockton
    • PV Executive Director – Gregory Sheldon
      • Leadership philosophy of Mark Stockton and Cmdr Sheldon
        • Build upon the success and longevity of PV through continued collaboration, neutrality, inclusiveness, and innovation
        • Lead by example, maintain positive attitudes, and encourage increased participation
          • More than 500 people connected with PV, with about 30 individuals consistently engaged in projects
        • Advance the PV mission statement, vision, and two key values: collaboration for the greater good; focus on the positive
    • Introductions of new attendees (Mark Stockton)
  • Mayor David Allaire remarks

    • Many events in Rutland this summer
      • Main St Concerts in the Park have garnered high attendance so far
      • 175th Vermont State Fair starts mid-August
      • Parade of Heroes to honor front-line workers in September
      • Friday Night Live returns in September
  • Chief Kilcullen remarks

    • Statewide staffing shortage in local police departments
      • Typically, 75 police officers are added statewide annually
        • Since 2018, between 20 and 50 more officers have left VT policing each year than new recruits gained
      • As of May 2021, there were 815 police officer positions in the state (98 fewer than in 2018) with 745 actively filled
    • RCPD is budgeted for 39 officers
      • 30 currently filled
      • RCPD is less able to fulfill its response to nonfatal overdoses, though there is communication with the VT Dept of Health to fill this role
      • Sgt Dickerson of the Community Response Team is temporarily reassigned to fulfill other RCPD work areas
        • Will have less engagement with Project VISION potentially until late spring 2021
    • Fewer new recruits
      • VT Police Academy will only have one session this year due to Covid reductions, when typically there are two
        • 22 new officer certifications this year
      • 90% of police officer applicants do not reach the stage of the Police Academy
        • There are discussions on whether the standard requirements for applicants accurately reflect what is demanded from officers on the job
      • 2 applicants with a pending offer of employment with the RCPD will be in the October session of the VT Police Academy
        • If certification is finalized, their employment will begin in May 2021 with the RCPD
  • New Meeting Structure – PV Executive Director Greg Sheldon

    • Rebooting the PV Steering Committee
      • Consists of Mark Stockton and Cmdr Sheldon; Jamie Bentley, Traci Moore, and Sarah Roy of the Health Committee; Alis Headlman; Joan Gamble
      • Meets monthly to address internal PV direction and ensure a seamless outward position
    • Calvary Bible Church is the new location for the monthly PV meetings
    • Committees schedule have their own meetings and committee worktimes
      • Committees and subcommittees have semiannual report outs during the PV meetings as needed
    • Monthly PV meeting is now 12 – 1:15pm each second Thursday of the month, as opposed to ending at 1:30
      • 1:15 – 1:30 now reserved for informal committee meet-ups and conversations
    • PV meetings will now be limited to one presentation topic per month
      • Aimed to limit the meetings from becoming too long and too detailed
      • At some meetings committee updates will serve as this presentation
    • PV meeting announcements must be kept brief and not become an additional presentation
      • Feel free to submit a slide ahead of time for your announcement
    • There will be people greeting in-person attendees at the door
    • In the future, there will be occasional evening meetings throughout the year
  • Presentations

    • Community Policing Subcommittee – Co-Chair Pat Hunter
      • Cmdr Sheldon and Pat Hunter are co-chairs of this subcommittee
      • Overarching objective is to bring recommendations outlined in the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing report into PV and the Rutland community
      • The subcommittee identified 3 goals to begin this work
        • 1. Enhance the rapport and relationship between PV and rank-and-file RCPD police officers
            • A focus is that any activities spearheaded by the committee does not increase the workload of officers
          •  
          • Bring back ride-alongs for subcommittee members to ride with officers on patrol
          • Host meet-and-greet snack parties between subcommittee members and officers during various shifts
          • Improve the communication of RCPD-related events to encourage community attendance and participation
        • 2. Further diversity, equity, and inclusion in the RCPD and PV
          • Bring the declaration of inclusion, endorsed by the Rutland Board of Alderman, into the activities of PV and the RCPD
          • Identify community events and gatherings where the subcommittee can engage with community members who otherwise may not be connected with PV
        • 3. Enhance the knowledge and skills of this subcommittee and key city leaders to further promote and support excellent community policing practices
          • Involve committee members and city leaders in police trainings
            • Currently, this includes DEI training, de-escalation training, crime prevention through environment design
          • Subcommittee members serve as a liaison between the RCPD and the community
    • Neighborhood Engagement Subcommittee – Co-Chair Alis Headlam
      • Subcommittee projects
        • Neighborhood walks
          • PV members and a few RCPD officers who participate in walks in various communities in Rutland throughout the year
            • Meant to engage with community members in a one-on-one manner
            • Subcommittee developed talking points to help participants approach community members
          • 8 walks in the past year
            • At least one walk in each sector of Rutland City, plus one in Mendon and one in Rutland Town
        • Welcome bags
          • Deliver bags filled with information to help new community members integrate
            • Intention to expand this program to include follow-ups and PV invitations
          • 13 bags distributed so far
        • Future projects ideas
          • Community block party
          • Informal meet-and-greets and the VISION Center
      • Subcommittee objectives
        • Build community relationships between neighbors
        • Build community relations between citizens and the RCPD
  • Announcements

    • Alis Headlam – Project VISION history book
      • 156-pages of PV history written over the course of 3 years
      • The materialization of PV standing up and telling its own story
        • A wide array of community members and partners who collaborate to improve the city and surrounding towns across all focus areas
      • This book is an opportunity for us to tell and share the story of PV
      • Physical copy books are available for $20 at Phoenix bookstore in Rutland
        • All proceeds will support youth projects within Rutland City
      • An online version of the book is available on the PV website
  • Uplifting or positive story

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