Moline police propose program to reduce crime around rental properties

Moline Police Chief Darren Gault proposed a Crime Free Housing program to city council members on Tuesday. (KWQC)
Moline Police Chief Darren Gault proposed a Crime Free Housing program to city council members on Tuesday. (KWQC)(KWQC)
Published: Feb. 11, 2020 at 10:17 PM CST
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Moline police proposed a program to city council members on Tuesday that aims to help reduce crime and increase property values.

It's called the

which is a national initiative that 50 other cities in Illinois have implemented.

The program is designed to reduce crime around rental properties.

Moline Police Chief Darren Gault said he wants to take on this program because there is a correlation between crime and rental properties.

“A previous study done shows that 88 blocks in the city of Moline have 16.2% more crime per rental unit and more rental units than city average,” Gault said. “So there is data that supports a correlation between bad tenants, bad landlords, increased crime and more rentals.”

Gault said landlords play an important role in helping keep housing crimes under control.

The Crime Free Housing program would be made up of three phases.

The first phase would require landlords or property managers to take a class about their importance in keeping the community safe.

Phase two and three would be optional.

Phase two is an on-site property inspection.

Phase three would have rental properties put on a social event for tenants where a police officer would come in, educate residents and address any of their concerns.

“If a landlord goes through all three phases they would be certified as a crime-free housing location,” Gault said. “They would get the official crime free housing gold signs at their property and brand that on their marketing materials for their rental property that they are a crime-free property.”

Gault said that should also help properties with their property values.

Gault pointed out that there are several success stories with this program across the country.

One of the success stories comes from Palatine, Illinois, where after the program, calls to police were reduced by about 65%.

Davenport has a program similar to this, but no other town in the Quad Cities has anything like it.

The Moline City Council agreed to allow Moline police to continue looking into it.

If the city decides to go through with this, nothing would become mandatory for landlords until as early as January 2021.

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