Leadership Lincoln holds a "Hot Topic" Luncheon with the Police - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Leadership Lincoln holds a "Hot Topic" Luncheon with the Police and Fire Chiefs

Leadership Lincoln holds a "Hot Topic" Luncheon with the Police and Fire Chiefs

Posted By: Jason Taylor

jtaylor@klkntv.com

LINCOLN, Neb. Lincoln's Fire and Police chiefs shared their goals and answered some questions.

"I want to hear what they want to know. What their expectations are for me as chief of police and hopefully I can take that input and more effectively do our jobs." Said Chief Jeff Bliemeister, LPD Chief of Police 

Leadership Lincoln is an organization that's aimed at educating a diverse group of youth and adult leaders on strengthening the community. The hot topics luncheon is where the organization members can ask questions about Lincoln’s public safety.

"These are opinion leaders in the community and people who are very active in civic affairs. So, they're normally in tune with current events so they ask good questions. Difficult questions." Said Tom Casady, Director of Public Safety

One of the big topics discussed was police officer recruitment. Some questions were about the diversity, cultural competence and psychological stability of recruit selection. Chief Bliemeister says they're in the process of hiring 16 new officers and the top qualities they look for is someone who represents Lincoln’s demographics and has an exceptional background. But he's says that's challenging.

"Some of the hurdles that we're facing is the low unemployment rate. There's plenty of job opportunities out there and we need to be able to showcase that this is a service oriented profession. It's a calling." Chief Bliemeister Said

LFR Chief Mike Despain says there are concerns about maintaining fire and emergency services with the same rate of Lincoln's growth. He says response time was an important topic too.

"If you like a faster level of service it might cost you a little more money. If you're ok with where we're at, this is the cost. If you want a lower level of service you might save some money. But it's up to them to dictate what level of service they want." Said Chief Michael Despain, LFR Chief

LFR Chief Despain says the efficiency and effectiveness of fire and rescue services in Lincoln has been rated one of the best in the country. Chief Bliemister says an advantage LPD has is developing great trust with the community. 

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