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Tip line for wronged lovers, other efforts to increase public safety in South Fulton

Rose and handcuffs. (Image via Facebook, City of South Fulton Police Department.)

By David Pendered

A tip line to tattle on an ex-lover who “done wrong” and a housing allowance for police and fire personnel are two of the City of South Fulton’s latest innovations to improve public safety.

The tip line was posted Feb. 7 on the South Fulton Police Department’s Facebook page. The image shows a rose and a pair of handcuffs.

The post begins with an offer too good to refuse: “Do you have an ex-Valentine and know they have outstanding warrants? Do you have information that they are driving with drugs in their car? Give us a call with their location and we’ll take care of the rest.”

Comments have been supportive. One person wrote: “Ya’ll are so wrong for this, but funny!!! Good luck, let me know if someone did require the service!!”

The department continued the post with a description of what the wrong-doer can expect: “This Valentine’s Day Month-long Special starts off with a set of limited-edition platinum bracelets, free transportation with a chauffeur, a one-night minimum stay in luxurious [5 star] accommodations and professional glamour shots that will be posted on online for all to enjoy. This special is capped off with a special Valentine’s dinner.”

Another person observed: “I’m sure the phones are ringing off the hook!!”

The post concludes: “We know this special is so incredible that you may be tempted to provide additional referrals. We don’t blame you, this special is too sweet to pass up. Operators are standing by! (Laugh all you want, but someone reading this is about to call us and give someone up!)”

The housing allowance is a straightforward offer of up to $450 a month. The program is open to the city’s public safety staff who reside in the City of South Fulton.

The money can be applied toward rent or mortgage payments. The city has surveyed the staff and discovered that 27 percent of employees reside in the city. Of those who live outside the city, 58 percent reported they’re interested in living within city limits, according to a Jan. 24 statement from South Fulton.

City Manager Tammi Saddler Jones said in the statement the housing allowance is a pilot program that could help South Fulton attract public safety employees by easing the burden of housing costs.

“Competition for experienced and skilled public safety employees has ramped up in the last year or two,” Saddler Jones said in the statement. “This program allows us to employ the best in the field who will become even more qualified to serve our city because they live here.”

South Fulton pays a starting salary of $52,007 for a police officer with an active Georgia Peace Officer Certification through the Georgia Peace Officers Standards and Training Council. Benefits include 401A and Deferred 457 retirement programs; take-home vehicle; dental, vision, medical and long-term disability insurance coverage; and 13 paid holidays, according to the city’s website.

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David Pendered

David Pendered, Managing Editor, is an Atlanta journalist with more than 30 years experience reporting on the region’s urban affairs, from Atlanta City Hall to the state Capitol. Since 2008, he has written for print and digital publications, and advised on media and governmental affairs. Previously, he spent more than 26 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and won awards for his coverage of schools and urban development. David graduated from North Carolina State University and was a Western Knight Center Fellow.

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