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Billings chamber survey shows support for public-safety spending

Council mulling levy
Posted at 6:52 PM, Oct 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-02 21:11:59-04

BILLINGS — Billings needs more staff and office space for police, fire, and support personnel, according to Billings Chamber of Commerce survey results released Wednesday at the Northern Hotel.

The survey results from chamber members come as the Billings City Council is debating the size of its ask in an anticipated public-safety levy, and when to place the measure on the ballot.

The results also showed two-thirds of businesses believe public safety issues have an impact on their bottom line.

That same survey showed funding in a safety levy should go toward hiring additional police officers, expanding mental health services and treating substance abuse.

Business owners at the presentation also offered crime-prevention tips for their fellow property owners.

Sean Lynch, co-owner of the Pub Station in downtown Billings, advised business owners to go to their business at early morning hours to see what it looks like.

When he did that for the first time, he said he noticed broken lights and other problems, which he fixed immediately at a low cost to improve safety.