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SANTA ANA : Business Community Watch Draws Praise

October 06, 1994|JON NALICK

A newly organized crime-prevention program that teams local businesses with police won praise from the City Council this week as an important tool for making the city safer.

The council Monday issued a proclamation hailing the formation of the South Garnsey Business Community Watch Program, which will monitor the area bounded by Flower Street on the west, Main Street on the east, Warner Avenue on the north and Dyer Road on the south.

About 30% of the 98 businesses in the area are members of the organization and that percentage is expected to grow significantly, Santa Ana Police Lt. Michael Foote said.

Similar to Neighborhood Watch programs, in which a network of neighbors look out for each other and maintain close ties with police, the Business Community Watch program will encourage members to report crimes, improve security and also offer employees personal safety training classes, Foote said.

City Councilwoman Patricia McGuigan said the program will help reduce those crimes and provide a crucial link among businesses and with the police, and provide an improved sense of security for employees who work within the area.

City officials expect the area's crime rate will drop significantly once the program is fully developed over the next few months. Soon after, the program might be expanded to other business communities citywide, McGuigan said.

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