How many sworn positions make up the Lakeland Police Department? What’s the training process for new officers? How can citizens access public police records? What diversity or de-escalation trainings are planned?
A Q+A with the Lakeland Police Department | Photo by @thelaltoday
Q: How many officers/deputies are there in the Lakeland Police Department? A: 249
Q: How is the department funded? A: The department is funded through the City’s General Fund.
Q: Does your department currently use body cameras? If so, what are the policies on when they are worn, and when they are actively recording? A: No, none of the law enforcement agencies in Polk County have body cameras. We are the only agency that has dash cameras in every officer’s marked patrol vehicles as well as body-worn microphones.
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○ Disney World is starting to open resorts + campgrounds in Central Florida after months of closures due to COVID-19. Disney has announced plans for a phased reopening with limited capacity, additional health measures, and updated reservation protocols. Disney’s Animal Kingdom + Magic Kingdom are set to reopen July 11, with Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios reopening shortly thereafter, on July 15. Beginning this week, Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground + select Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts will reopen. Check out the full list of properties reopening on June 22here.(Click Orlando)
○Over the weekend, Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state would start cracking down on bars + restaurants not adhering to guidelines limiting the number of people inside establishments after Florida received 4,000+ positive cases this past Saturday morning.(Creative Loafing Tampa)
○ Carnival Cruise Line has canceled all sailings until October 2020. Yesterday, the cruise line announced extending their pause in services + cruise cancellations through Sept. 30. Those who have already booked trips + will be impacted by these changes should have received an email from Carnival or the travel advisor they booked through to reschedule or receive a refund.(FOX 35 Orlando)
○ With fewer people at the beach + in the water because of COVID-19, shark attacks have dropped worldwide. According toFlorida Today, there have only been 18 unprovoked shark bitesconfirmed worldwide, one happened in Duval + the other happened in Brevard. This time last year, Florida had eight bites by mid-June and seven in 2018. Officials are warning people to still keep their guards up if they visit the beach. (Click Orlando)
Hey, there. Looking for today’s #MustDo events? In accordance with the
CDC’s recommendations regarding public gatherings, we have decided to postpone public event coverage for the time being. We look forward to bringing you Lakeland’s #MustDo events soon (until then, feel free to submit your virtual events
In yesterday’s City Commission meeting, commissioners decided against a mask mandate in Lakeland. 😷
This decision was announced during yesterday’s special commission meeting. Local health leaders asked commissioners for a mask ordinance, though after the mayor moved to approve the order, no commissioner made a motion to pass it. The decision to wear masks is left up to businesses + citizens.
In more mask news, FL’s State Surgeon General also issued a public health advisory yesterday, saying, “all individuals in Florida should wear face coverings in any setting where social distancing is not possible unless any of the following is applicable.”
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Weather ○ 93º | PM Thunderstorms | 60% chance of rain ○ With moisture increasing, the ‘feels like’ temperature + Heat Index will be near 105º by tomorrow. (Fox 35 Orlando)
Holiday ○ While many 4th of July events have been cancelled or postponed this year, there are still a few options for fireworks shows in the area. Dundee, Auburndale, Davenport, and LEGOLAND are still hosting events. If you’re someone who loves to see fireworks but doesn’t want to deal with the crowds, here is a list of televised events. 🎆 (Lakeland Mom)
Tech ○ A Polk County man has created a surveillance device called the Synergy Vehicle Live 360 View, which creates a bird’s eye view + live look around a vehicle, using multiple cameras. The device uses various sensors + a dashboard screen to alert the driver if anyone is approaching. He is in the process of pitching the Synergy Vehicle Live 360 View to local law enforcement agencies. (WFLA News Channel 8)
Stat ○ 1 in 4. The number of car accidents in the U.S. that are caused by texting while driving. As we get back out on the road, it’s important to be aware of distracted drivers and not contribute to this statistic. See how an accident could affect your insurance premiumfrom the local experts at Heacock Insurance. 🚗 Ⓟ ○ 57.3%. The percentage of Polk County residents who have taken the 2020 Census survey. The top three cities with the highest percentages are Polk City(62.7%), Davenport(62.1%), and Auburndale(61.9%). So far, Lakeland’s response rate is 61%. In Florida, the rate of people who have taken the census is 58.7%. Read more here to learn about the importance of the Census, the effects, and how to respond to the questionnaire.
Ranked ○ The Lakeland-Winter Haven area ranked no. 2 for unemployment in metropolitan areas at 19.1% – a 5.1% rise from April, after the state Department of Economic Opportunity announced a 14.5% unemployment rate for May. This accounts for an estimated 1.412 million people, for FL’s tourism-reliant state.The number of private jobs across the state were down 834,900 from May last year. The state unemployment system has received 2.57 million claims since mid-March, nearly half of which came in April, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. (Orlando Weekly) ○ 45. Florida’s ranking in WalletHub’s recent list of Most Patriotic States in America. The methodology used to find these rankings include measuring the most veterans per capita, the average number of military enlistees per capita, most Peace Corps Volunteers per capita, voting rates + volunteer rates. Notably, FL ranked the lowest in volunteer rates. New Hampshire ranked no. 1 + New Jersey ranked no 50.(WalletHub)
Civic ○ Hey, commuters.The Florida Department of Transportationwill temporarily close State Road 50(Colonial Drive) under I-4, nightly from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. through June 26. FDOT released a handout about the closures with information on alternate routes. This construction is part of the $2.3 billion project to rebuild 21 miles of highway from west of Kirkman Rd. to east of State Rd. 434 in Longwood. (Orlando Weekly)
Trending ○ Swish, Swish.Lakeland Magic Mascot Swish joined the #DontRushChallenge with a few of his mascot friends from the NBA G-League. Watch here.
Politics ○ Gov. Ron DeSantis signed 21 bills over the weeked, including measures preventing bear poaching + improving school-bus safety. House Bill 327 is aimed at curbing black bear poaching, as bears are being killed for their gallbladders, as their bile is sold on the black market + promoted as a cure for multiple illnesses. The school-bus safety bill, House Bill 37 will raise the penalties for improper driving when buses stop to load/unload children. (Creative Loafing)
Watch ○ Virgin Galactic,a private space company, will work with NASA to create a private astronaut readiness program, further establishing NASA’s plans for commercializing the space station in the future. SpaceX is currently the only private company to have successfully flown humans to orbit. As for today’s SpaceX launch from Cape Canaveral, conditions are leaning toward suitable + the launch window is scheduled to open at 5:58 p.m. The Falcon 9 rocket will carry a batch of Starlink satellites into orbit from Kennedy Space Center. (FOX 35 Orlando)
DYK ○Florida is one of the world’s leading gay + lesbian travel destinations? Our state hosts several LGBTQ+ events throughout the year. Visit Florida has created an inclusive list of the best dining + clubs, inclusive events, and festivals, and friendly accommodations in Florida’s most welcoming and popular LGBTQ+ areas. For a list of nearby events, click here. 🏳️🌈 (Visit Florida)
FeaturedEvent ○ Interested in learning more about managing your finances? Join Highland Park Church for their Financial Peace University on June 23 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. in the Family Ministries Building, Room 711/712. The Financial Peace University classes will be held each consecutive Tuesday from July 7 through September 1. Ⓟ
Home is the ultimate gathering place for millennials. From barbecues to birthday parties, they love to entertain.
Before your house goes on the market, use your own furniture or bring in a specialist to help stage your home.Instead of just an empty box, staginggives potential buyers an idea of what entertaining could look like in their new home.
We love to #ShopLocal, #EatLocal, and – of course – experience all the great local things our lil’ Swan City has to offer. To celebrate Juneteenth + support local black-owned businesses, for the next several days (when you receive a newsletter), we’ll be sharing a business to support as an act of community solidarity.
Need to schedule a dental checkup? Once a year, Dr. Nerestant at Midtown Dental(607 S. Missouri Ave.) opens his office to offer free dental care to residents of Lakeland.
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