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Linden Police Department gets tech upgrades

City Council approves GPS, diagnostic devices for vehicles

The Linden City Council unanimously approved the purchase of six Verizon Connect devices, which will be used in police vehicles to run diagnostics and GPS services, for approximately $113 per month and a one-time charge of approximately $181.

The devices can be used for tracking vehicles, receiving real-time maintenance alerts, creating stop detail reports and collecting data for vehicle grants. The amount of tracking that can be done with the devices is customizable per user, and any requested information can be automatically turned into a report and sent to the user.

“I can monitor their patrols which aid in the response to inquiries by the council or residents in the neighborhoods,” Police Chief Robert Alston said in a post-meeting interview.

Verizon Connect also comes with four instances of roadside assistance per vehicle per year.

The city of Linden has been testing these devices for about a month and Alston has been pleased with the results.

“I think it would be a positive tool for us to use,” Alston said.

Other items discussed by the council are:

• The council heard Portia Shepperd from Turning Point Alabama speak about the sexual assault services that the organization provides in Marengo County including a crisis line, support groups, emergency housing, rural court advocacy and more. All services are provided for free.

• The council unanimously approved the purchase of a community ad in conjunction with other cities and community organizations for $600.

• Mayor Charles Moore recognized Alston for earning a certificate honoring his completion of his first 48-hour training in the Certified Law Enforcement Executive Program.

• Public Works Director Terry Tyson told the council that he is currently working on pricing and grants for multiple projects within the city. He also told the council that the city is now participating in a work-based learning program that Alabama Career Center offers.

• Councilman Neal Jackson told the council that a resident was having issues with a ditch holding water at her home. Tyson said he would fix the situation.

• The council heard City Clerk Susie Ford present CEMP, a work-based learning program that the Marengo County Department of Human Resources offers.

• The council unanimously approved joining other districts and Beasley Allen Law Firm in litigation against opioid distributers in response to the public health emergency.

• City Attorney Woody Dinning Jr. told the council that he has completed the title check and was moving forward with acquiring the Stewart property.

The Linden City Council meets at 4:30 p.m. on the first and third Tuesday of each month at city hall.

(This article originally appeared in the Wednesday, April 25 issue of the Demopolis Times.)