Williamston Mayor Mack Durham said this week that the town is taking steps to help address crime in local neighborhoods.
“It is a tragedy every time a shooting occurs. Everyone involved is a victim,” Durham said. “This is the collateral damage associated with drugs and crime in our communities here and throughout the nation. The criminal element will never willingly leave our communities as long as we allow them to reside here or set up their business here. They will always go where they can operate in the most lucrative way.”
“Over a year ago we proactively formed an agreement with the Housing Authority to remove residents living in government subsidized housing that committed or condoned or associated themselves with criminal activities. This has been a very effective deterrent to crime within Housing Authority homes.”
Durham said earlier this year Council was presented an Ordinance to implement these same practices with local landlords to discourage renting properties to criminals in town neighborhoods.
Durham said the ordinance will go into effect January 1st, 2018 to give landlords ample notice that we are serious about crime in the town’s neighborhoods.
“I am pro-business, but I will always be pro-community first,” Durham said. “As Mayor, I have directed Chief Taylor to continue to make this a priority. We can grow safer neighborhoods, but it will take more than the Mayor and the Chief of Police. We need the continued support of the community and the Solicitor’s office to move this criminal element out of our neighborhoods.”