Wade on Birmingham

Heads and tales: Makes us wonder



Traffic snarl: More than $17 million has been spent on electronic signs and cameras scattered on interstate highways around Birmingham, yet even with frequent traffic tie-ups, they remain unhelpfully blank. Why? Cops say they don’t report all incidents, and when they do, they often get the runaround from the state transportation department. The DOT says it has the people in place and will make the procedures clearer to police departments. And the sign on U.S. 280 doesn’t give info because no one’s in charge. What’s at stake? Besides public money invested, leaving the traffic problem unsolved means lost productivity, more pollution and more risk of secondary accidents. Even the nonsense is bumper to bumper.
• Why is this sign still blank? [Birmingham News]

To do nothing: Homicides, rapes and robberies are up this year in Birmingham, as in other cities. The police chief appears to be losing not only the war on crime, but the war on public perception, too. Chief Annetta Nunn prefers the low-key approach, but is that enough to frighten criminals and soothe citizens? She has Mayor Kincaid on her side, though several critics say he’s interfering more than needed. Nunn said, “Some people see things and don’t report them. As long as it doesn’t bother them, they don’t report it. People need to learn that criminals act on fear. We have to have assistance from the public.” Funny, we haven’t noticed a severe drop in public participation — just a severe lack of leadership and focus.
• In addition to crime, Nunn fights public perception [Birmingham News]

Home work: Can Birmingham find homes for its homeless population by 2016? The city has formed a committee to form a 10-year plan to help an estimated 3,000 citizens who spend their days and nights on the street. The federal initiative involves 240 communities tackling the same issues: housing, health care, crime and image. Birmingham faces a bigger challenge, since an estimated 30 percent of the homeless population are chronically homeless, three times the national rate. The least among us deserve more than a cold shoulder.
• Homeless panel begins work [Birmingham News]


  • Mall proclaims final markdowns with dying breath
  • Governance of state two-year college system converts to feudal monarchy
  • Fall fashion preview: crimson/white and orange/blue combos on horizon

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1 Yip for “Heads and tales: Makes us wonder”

  1. 3choBoomer
    Tuesday, July 25, 2006, 5:29 pm

    I’ve heard from a Police Capitan that Nunn is a “Yes Woman” for Kincade…

    Tis a shame….

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