Sunday, July 10, 2016

The New Normal

Dallas.  Orlando. Charleston. San Bernardino. Newtown.  All acts of domestic terrorism that have become such a part of our awareness that we know right away what happened in these places, and many others.  In each, military assault weapons were turned on other Americans, police officers, club kids, church goers, city workers and children, in mass shootings.   The cost to our psyche, our sense of safety and to our moral sense of who we are is beyond measure.  

But this new normal has another real cost.  Economic.   

In North Bay Village, our first costs are showing.  At the initial budget meeting, Chief Noriega laid out the cold facts of our own vulnerabilities.   While the chances of a North Bay Village suffering this kind of attack are infinitesimally low, just as they were everywhere they happened, the new normal is the reality that our police need to be prepared for random terrorism.   

And there is a cost.   Chief Noriega laid out an initial capital plan spending $240,000 for training and equipment for the PD to respond to mass shootings and other terrorist acts.   Nobody knows how much it will be to sustain the effort but Noriega made a compelling case for why North Bay Village can't afford to ignore the new normal.   We are vulnerable as an island city with a dense population and an easy tropical lifestyle.   

The budget is not final and there may be adjustments but there's little question that the commission will do the right thing and fund this preparedness effort.   

This is money that could be spent on things we need and want but because of the new normal, we have to spend our money on this.   

Kevin Vericker
July 10, 2016

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