Ten Steps To A Graffiti-free City 11/27/12

November 27, 2012
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When I first started, I asked the staff lots and lots of questions.  I assured them that I was not going to come in and make willy-nilly changes.  I didn’t even tell them that I was thinking of the disconnect that I just described.  Remember – they were proud of what they did and did not think that there was a problem.  I felt that I had to tread lightly.  During this initial period, I learned quite a bit. I learned that:



  • If someone reported graffiti on the Graffiti Hotline it would take an average of 21 days to remove it.
  • If a member of the City Council (or their staff) reported graffiti, staff would drop everything and remove it immediately.
  • If a member of the public complained about the slow response time and threatened to call the mayor…staff would drop everything and remove it immediately.
  • The performance measure target for removing graffiti was “48 working “ hours.  It was explained to me by staff that “48 working” hours was really six workdays NOT two days.  They told me that sounded better and that the administration never really asked them specifically what that meant.  I knew right away that deception would come back to haunt us some day when the administration figured it out…and boy did it!

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