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Mayor Viewpoint: Rosemount ranks near the top for safest Minnesota cities

Bill Droste

By Bill Droste, mayor of Rosemount

I often write about how strong the quality of life is in Rosemount. Of course, you'd expect to hear that from the mayor. So it's gratifying when an independent source says the same thing. Good news came again this month.

Rosemount made the top-10 list of the "safest cities in Minnesota." The ranking was compiled by Alarms.org, which offers reviews of home security systems. The authors analyzed reports to the FBI for cities of 10,000 people or more. Rosemount ranked ninth on the list in Minnesota, the highest standing in Dakota County. A few days later, another website that collects data about communities, HomeSnacks.com, put us in sixth.

Those showings are a great place to start as we begin a transition in the Rosemount Police Department. Chief Mitchell Scott is retiring this week. He has a lot to look back on with pride, and so do we.

Scott was hired in 2014, and he worked hard to support the work of the department. At a time when the role of law enforcement nationwide has come in for questioning, Scott maintained professional standards while building a sense of family among our officers and staff.

As he told City Council last week, "I will miss being your chief. I was not looking to retire — just an opportunity came upon me that I could not pass up." He will remain in our area in the private sector.

Last summer, the community survey confirmed a high level of satisfaction among residents for the quality of Rosemount police services — a level above the national benchmarks. The chief would be the first to tell you that credit goes to the members of the department and to the community that supports them.

We are pleased that Police Commander Mikael Dahlstrom is ready to step up as the interim chief for the department. City Council will discuss the next steps at a future meeting.

One way our citizens can pitch in is to maintain and strengthen the sense of neighborhood. Crime is less likely to take hold when we know and support the people who live near us. Even though it's a half-year away, it's not too soon to think about organizing your block party for this summer's Night to Unite.

As safe as Rosemount is, bad things still happen. Crimes still take a toll on members of our community. Our City Council will work to maintain strong law enforcement that can respond to those threats, and we hope residents will join us.

And whether you want to talk about public safety or any other issue in the community, I hope you will join us for our second Coffee with the Council event from 9-11 a.m. Saturday, March 9, at Robert Trail Library. We need your opinions and ideas to make Rosemount the best it can be for all of us.

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