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April 10--  The Vidalia Police Department has been recertified for the second time by the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police.  It's one of only 98 in the state to meet the standards and brings with it certain benefits, according to Frank Rotondo of the Association.

 "One of them is that employee morale goes up, public confidence is another real benefit of the program and having solid policy in place means that the city's liability insurance rates normally go down," he said.

{mosimage}Police Chief Frank Waits (accepting the recertificaton with Mayor Ronnie Dixon from Rotondo) says his department complys with 118 different law enforcement standards to keep the award.

"I think the people of Vidalia can be very proud of their department. There's nothing hidden in this department.  You can come in at anytime and see what we're doing and how we're doing it as long as it's not a domestic violence case or a case under investigation," Chief Waits said.

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The presentation of the recertification award was made at Monday night's meeting of the Vidalia city council.  Officer Lawanda Beasley was given special recognition for her work in documenting the department's certification program. 

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At the same time, Robbie Akins from ESG, the city's public works contractor, presented the city with a ground water safety award from the Georgia Water Works Association. (L-R Mayor Pro Tem Raymond Turner, ESG's Jeff West, Mayor Dixon, Akins and city manager Bill Torrance)

The council granted a beer and wine license to the Pal Theater in downtown Vidalia, forgave a $3,000 rent bill to the United Way, granted a street name request for the road off Highway 292 leadng to a new senior citizens complex and okayed equipment purchases for the fire and water departments.