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City Council briefs

October 09, 1997

Prostitution arrests praised

Citizen complaints contributed to the decision to stage a prostitution sting last weekend, Hagerstown Police Chief Dale Jones said Tuesday.

Speaking at a City Council work session, Jones said the department moved up plans to conduct the sting by about a month. Ten people were arrested Friday night and Saturday morning.

Parents at St. Mary's School complained at an August council meeting the prostitutes were brazenly plying their trade.

Councilman Wally McClure praised the police action.

"I think that's good because I think it shows the populace that we are responsive," he said.

Jones also credited city officials, who installed brighter lights in the area.

Surveys coming in at steady clip

Hagerstown officials are receiving surveys at a steady pace asking residents to detail their top concerns, a city official said Tuesday.

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Larry Bayer, the community development coordinator, said Hagerstown Fire Department officials are handing the pink survey card out as they speak with residents about fire safety. He said officials are reaching about half of the city's residents. Of those, he estimated about half have sent the surveys back.

"I'm surprised you're getting that kind of response. That's good," Councilman Al Boyer said.

Part of the city's "Neighborhoods First" campaign, the surveys ask residents to identify major concerns. Bayer said this will help officials provide better services.

Bayer said the surveys sent back so far contain interesting answers. For instance, major news stories often influence respondents' answers, he said. He added that the card asks residents the same question three different ways.

"A lot of these surveys, we get three different answers," he said.

Bayer said the city will tabulate the results by Thanksgiving.

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