CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) — Efforts to reduce rowdiness in the neighborhoods around Oregon State University appear to be bearing fruit.
Police reports from September through November show markedly reduced levels of disturbances, fights and loud parties this year, when compared with the same three months a year ago.
The Corvallis Gazette-Times said instances of loud music, hosting a party for minors and minor in possession of alcohol also are down, although not so greatly.
As the university has grown in recent years, tensions have risen in the neighborhoods nearby where students live and party.
Among the initiatives, many begun in response to recommendations from a group called the CollaborationCorvallis project:
— Increased fines for alcohol violations and a provision that allows the city to charge for officer time and other costs when police issue what are called special response notices for various violations. Previously, the charges were made only if there was a second infraction in 30 days.
— A university requirement that freshmen live on campus and more resources for the student conduct and Greek life offices.
— Efforts by property managers and landlords to enforce tenant behavior rules and to cooperate on education and outreach. One manager hired a private security firm to patrol.
"It is clear that behavior changes when all of the adults — neighbors, landlords and police — are on the same page and say 'No,' firmly and clearly," said Charlyn Ellis, who lives in the Chintimini Park area and worked on the recommendations.
Some neighbors think that additional security measures by landlords are simply moving the parties and noise elsewhere. And some residents say the noise has continued.
"I see little change in the number of noisy parties in the blocks adjacent to our house," said Courtney Cloyd, president of the Central Park Neighborhood Association.
But the news isn't all bad, he said. "In all but a couple of cases where I've talked to the party hosts, they have dealt directly with the noise and have thanked me for not calling (the police)," he said. "That doesn't necessarily mean they won't host another party ... but they remember for a few days or a week."
Corvallis Police Chief Jon Sassaman says he's pleased with the results so far. He plans to assemble a force of "community livability officers" after he hires three new members of the force with revenue from a property tax increase voters passed in November.
Information from: Gazette-Times,
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