In May of 2008, Norman residents approved PSST I which provided for a temporary sales tax increase of ½ of 1% on retail sales for the period 10/1/2008 to 9/30/2015. In part, PSST I funded the addition of 41 police officers and equipment needed to reinstate the Community Oriented Policing (COP) Program.
In short, COP is a policing strategy based on the concept that Norman police and Norman citizens work together in creative ways to help solve contemporary community problems related to public safety including crime, fear of crime, social and physical disorder, and neighborhood decay. Overall, the program seeks to expand the crime prevention community partnerships and problem solving activities of the Norman Police Department and to change the law enforcement culture of the City over time.
On April 1, 2014, Norman residents approved PSST II which continues the temporary sales tax beyond 9/30/2015. PSST II specifically approved permanent funding to retain personnel added from the revenues of PSST I (2008), along with providing for additional public safety personnel, an emergency operation and dispatch facility, a state-of-the-art emergency communications system, and updated emergency equipment. In addition, revenues from PSST II will provide funding to add 13 police officers to implement a School Resource Officer (SRO) Program. SROs are sworn law enforcement officers responsible for providing security and crime prevention services in our schools. The program is in partnership with local school districts.
The Citizen’s Public Safety Oversight Committee was appointed in 2008 and meets monthly to monitor expenditures from the Public Safety Sales Tax.