May 8th, 2023
Innovative proposal puts more deputies on the road — creates high-tech, real time center for interagency response to active crime and public safety threats
Monroe County Executive Adam Bello, joined by Sheriff Todd Baxter, District Attorney Sandra Doorley, local police chiefs and members of the Monroe County Legislature today announced an unprecedented $7.3 million investment in the Sheriff’s Office. The funding will bring 41 additional sworn members to enhance the Sheriff’s road patrol in towns and villages, ensuring a greater police presence to deter and respond to criminal activity. Additionally, the funding will establish a new Regional Investigative Operations Center (RIOC), a cutting-edge multijurisdictional hub for monitoring and rapid response to real-time criminal activity.
“This unprecedented investment is needed to respond to the surge in shootings, car thefts, smash and grab crime and threats to our schools — crimes driven by a lack of accountability,” said County Executive Bello. “Protecting the public is job one. Never before has a County administration made an investment this substantial and this transformative in public safety and our Sheriff’s office. The added deputies and new RIOC center will give Sheriff Baxter the deputies, technology and tools he needs to keep our residents safe.”
“We are grateful to Monroe County for the additional staffing resources that will help us to better protect the citizens in the areas we serve,” said Monroe County Sheriff Todd K. Baxter. “Over the past couple of decades, the population in our service area has grown by 8%, yet our staffing has not grown. We need to ensure the areas we police have adequate resources, not just the bare minimum. We must hire more men and women to patrol, answer calls for service, and engage with our community. We must also staff our zones at a rate that prioritizes deputy wellness. Policing has evolved with technological developments at an exponential rate. In turn, the expectations of professional police agencies have also grown. We must grow with the times.”
“In addition, the Regional Investigation Operations Center, or RIOC, is innovation leading us into the 21st century,” Baxter continued. “Taking actionable criminal information and making it operational in real time. ROCTAC has taken off here in Monroe County and across the state. Linking ROCTAC to the RIOC will ensure the thoroughness of our work to prevent targeted violence. We appreciate the contributions of both the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services and the NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services.”
With 30 new road patrol deputies and three lieutenants, the Sheriff's Office will create new positions in each of its three coverage zones (A, B, and C). With these additional resources, there will be increased road patrols during the busiest times, allowing for increased proactivity.
Years of disinvestment in the Sheriff's Office have resulted in understaffed platoons and limited geographic coverage, with an average of one deputy per 3,600 residents, which is less than half the national average. This has forced some deputies to cover more than 30 square miles on their own, which is unacceptable.
The funding will also allow for enhanced Sheriff’s Office coverage at the Frederick Douglass Greater Rochester International Airport, an additional juvenile investigator and a county-wide crime coordinator.
The Regional Investigative Operations Center will be tasked with communication and coordination among multiple law enforcement agencies when it comes to pattern crimes, as well as threats of violence, across multiple jurisdictions. The RIOC will be equipped with the latest software and technology, capable of supporting large scale investigations and county wide emergencies. In addition, RIOC will work in concert with the Monroe Crime Analysis Center (MCAC), Monroe County Emergency Operations Center and the Rochester Threat Advisory Committee (ROCTAC), as ROCTAC is expanding here in Monroe County and throughout the state.
“I want to thank the County Executive for prioritizing public safety in Monroe County,” said Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley. “We expect law enforcement to help keep up safe and solve criminal investigations, but police agencies can only accomplish this task if they have the necessary resources. With today’s investment in the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, our community will be better served by dedicated law enforcement officers. This significant personnel increase will help to better protect our neighbors in Monroe County.”
County Executive Bellow submitted legislation for RIOC and Sheriff’s Office expansion today to the Monroe County Legislature for consideration.
"As Republican Legislators, our priority remains to bolster public safety and protect our community. Now more than ever, we must support our brave members of law enforcement by ensuring they have the resources and staffing needed to combat rising crime and nonsensical policies pushed on our community," said Public Safety Chair Paul Dondorfer. "Through the authorization of additional deputies and creation of a Regional Investigation Operations Center, our Monroe County Sheriff's Office will be better equipped to keep our families, neighborhoods, and businesses safe. I am thankful to Sheriff Baxter, County Executive Bello, and my colleagues in the Legislature for supporting this long overdue common-sense improvement that strengthens law and order."
“When I talk to neighbors, they tell me that they are most concerned with one thing – they want to feel safe. They want to live, work, and play in our community without wondering if they will be the next smash-and-grab or if their vehicle is stolen and crashed into a storefront,” added Legislator Dave Long. “I am proud to stand here today with my partners in government to announce this significant investment in the safety of our community. Thank you County Executive Bello and Sheriff Baxter for your commitment and partnership.”