The City of Fairbanks is seeking donations for the ESP (so-called in state statute) but referred to locally as the Community Service Patrol. The Downtown Association of Fairbanks has been in partnership with the city and many donors for years to provide this valuable service to the Fairbanks community. The city’s donation letter is here and donations can be made online here. If you have questions, please call 452-8676.
The Community Service Patrol started downtown in 2007 with a mission to maintain a positive environment in downtown’s public places and to take people found incapacitated or inebriated in public places to an appropriate point of care, as put forth by Alaska Statute, Title 47. For several years there was no city component to the funding of the CSP until the city council was persuaded that the CSP was doing the city’s work.
Over time, it was evident that the downtown-based program removed a substantial “duty burden” for the Police and Fire departments of non-criminal and non-emergent situations. So in 2014, then-Mayor John Eberhart asked the Downtown Association to take the program city-wide. The Downtown Association agreed, on the evidence of the program’s success at its mission plus the duty burden it alleviated for city departments. But the Downtown Association knew that a city-wide program would take our focus out of downtown, so the Association proposed a timeline by which the city would become the operator of the program and the Downtown Association would remain as a funder to the extent that it could raise monies from the private sector and grant sources.
The hand-over of operations was accomplished by a Memorandum of Agreement between the City and the Downtown Association on June 1, 2016, whereby the city assumed operational control of the CSP and aligned it with its emergency services departments, and the Downtown Association donated a van and remained as a funder by “aggregating” donations and grants and paying invoices presented by the city. 2018’s donors can be found here.
It is a unique relationship – a non-profit giving money to the city for its obligations to pubic safety – but it works and we are happy to play this role. Thank you for reading and thank you for donating to the CSP.