by Tanya Womack
Sheriff Davis, winner of 2013 public servant award is looking forward to continuing his position working as Sheriff under the new Macon-Bibb Consolidation Government. The new consolidation government of Macon, Payne City and Bibb County will be replaced with a single government led by a mayor and nine county commissioners. The new government will be effective January 1, 2014.
Sheriff Davis said, "I am truly humbled and honored to be receiving this award. It is unexpected and a great honor."
Big changes will take place for law enforcement personnel under the new consolidation government. Under the new Macon-Bibb County government, the sheriff’s office will be over the entire law enforcement. The will no longer be a Macon police department. Sheriff Davis said, "Basically, we are creating a whole new agency. The new agency will be called, the Bibb County Sheriff's Office. The new consolidation government has decided the law enforcement should be under the Sheriff's Department. We are creating new policies and procedures. The Bibb County Sheriff's Office will be emerging with the police department, this is not a takeover, and we are taking the best from both agencies and merging them together."
Under the old government the sheriff's office was over the jails and the courts. There were 130 deputies doing law functions in unincorporated areas outside of the city limits. Inside the city of Macon, you had the Macon police department. Under the Macon-Bibb County government all of the law enforcement will fall up under the Bibb County Sheriff's Office and all of the law enforcement will be in the same building. This is another way for all law enforcement to work together, compare notes and discuss cases, collaborate and help solve crimes.
Not only will the new agency have new policies and procedures, they will also have new uniforms. Instead, of the deputies wearing their brown/tan uniforms and police officers wearing their dark blue, they will be wearing a gray shirt and black pants by the first week in January. Davis said, "We didn't want anybody to feel like they were being taken over. I want everybody to come into the new agency with a new look and a fresh start. It is a new beginning for our government, so it's a new beginning for our law enforcement. Our cars will even have a new look."
There will be about 800 personnel under the new combined agency. Over 600 sworn officers, 160 civilian support staff and between the Police Department and the Bibb County Sheriff's Office there are 30 to 50 vacancies.
When asked about the crime rate in Macon and Bibb County? Sherriff Davis answered, "When you look at some of these national rankings for crimes in other cities and compare them to crime rate in Macon and Bibb County per capital, we are not that crime ridden as you might think. Now, we do have some issues, we do have some homicides, burglaries and personal crimes that give us some real concerns and those are some things we are working on. Our personal crime has been platoing. On personal crimes, we are doing a lot of things in the community. We are doing more community education and working with our citizens on how to protect their personal property and their valuables. One thing that can be a deterrent in helping reduce crime is solving a crime as quickly as possible. Having a team of investigators, police officers on the scene and to get someone arrested as soon as you can."
Another crime reducing plan that has been implemented the by Sheriff's Office is the Sheriff Outreach Session (SOS) this program is design to get the community, churches and community based organizations involved in assisting law enforcement in solving crimes by helping citizen to become more aware of what is going on in their communities and call the police when they witness or have information about a crime.
Sheriff Davis said, "My goal is to provide the best law enforcement service and give the citizens a new agency. It is our responsibility to address needs and issues. The sheriff's office has always been in the communities and the citizens will see us more and we will continue to explore every possible way to reduce crime. We want to make a difference and that is what we are going to do."
Sheriff Davis is a lifelong resident of Macon, Georgia. He is a graduate of the 212th session of the FBI National Academy and has served the citizens of Bibb County for 33 years as a deputy with the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office. He was elected Sheriff of Bibb County in November of 2012. He is happily married to Lili Davis, who is a Publications Manager for Georgia Farm Bureau. His daughter, Heather, is a lab scientist for the Georgia Environmental Protection Division. The First Baptist Church in Macon is the Davis family church home.
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