Congressman Roskam congratulates Palatine for making safe cities list

Republican U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam publicly congratulated Palatine for being among the suburbs considered the safest places in the United States.

Unlike when about 400 protesters jeered Roskam outside a Palatine Township Republican meeting in February, he was on friendly turf when he spoke at Monday night's village council session.

Roskam said he read into the Congressional Record his congratulations to Palatine for ranking 51st on the Neighborhood Scout list of the 100 safest U.S. cities with 25,000 or more residents for 2017. Roskam presented a keepsake copy of his congressional remarks to Mayor Jim Schwantz in front of the village council dais.

"Working together, law enforcement, local officials and community have made Palatine a safer place to live, work and raise a family," said Roskam, whose 6th Congressional District includes parts of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry counties. "The residents of Palatine should never underestimate the impact of each citizen's positive actions and what they can have."

The list cited by Roskam creates its ratings with data provided by 18,000 law enforcement agencies around the country, taking into account a community's population and the rate of several crimes per 1,000 residents including burglary, theft and murder.

Palatine Police Chief Alan Stoeckel said "the many great things about Palatine" were recognized with the ranking on the safest cities list and the kudos from Roskam.

"It's not just the police department, but the fire department and all the services the village provides," Stoeckel said. "I'm very proud of what we do. The men and women of the police department should be proud of something like this."

Stoeckel said the village has successfully continued with a neighborhood-based policing strategy started by former chief Jerry Bratcher in the 1980s.

"We not only are looking for those who are causing the problems in our community and to get to know them, but we're also out there looking for the majority of the people that are the ones that do support us, and we do want to get to know them, too," he said.

Lake in the Hills took the suburban safe honor by placing seventh on the Neighborhood Scout list for this year. Other towns included Bartlett in ninth place, Buffalo Grove in 12th, Wheaton in 32nd, Hanover Park in 37th, Huntley in 43rd and Arlington Heights in 49th.

Roskam meets with Republicans in Palatine, ignores 400 protesters

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