There should be much less tomfoolery at Felderman Park; and the scofflaws who dump illegal things at the compost site there will be also now be held to account.
This, after the City of Bellevue has installed surveillance cameras and new lighting on the west half of Felderman trail and the compost site nearby to record all activity day and night, which the Bellevue Police Department is able to monitor from City Hall.
The cameras and lighting, which include infrared technology, came at a cost of around $10,000 and were paid for through a successful ICAP (Iowa Communities Assurance Pool) grant for $1,000; about $6,000 from the Hotel-Motel Tax; as well as a Drug Free Communities Grant from the Area Substance Abuse Coalition (ASAC) for about $1,600.
According to ASAC’s Julia Furne, the Drug Free Communities grant is intended for reducing youth substance abuse.
“We worked with law enforcement to look for locations that had a high number of calls for service involving youth and illegal activity, including underage drinking. The two that popped were the Maquoketa Skate Park and Felderman Park in Bellevue,” said Furne. “So for Felderman Park, we talked with the Chief and Assistant Chief of Police about what factors exist which results in youth using the park for illegal activity and lack of lighting was identified. We agreed upon a plan and the grant paid for the lights and installation. We will be watching the calls for service to Felderman Park to determine if this was an effective strategy.”
As well as the grant funding, Bellevue Municipal Utilities donated labor and materials for the installation of the pole, fiber optic lines and the cameras.
While the cameras are already in use, city officials will soon be putting up signs to inform those that use the park that cameras are installed.
“The main goal is to provide safety to the park and for those walking, as well as to help monitor the compost sight area for the illegal dumping,” said Bellevue City Clerk Abbey Skrivseth. “We hope that the police do not have to write tickets, as this is not our goal.”