Residents Frightened by Crime Urge Mayor to Make Peace with Police

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It is not an election year for city of Atlanta offices, but campaign signs are popping up in front yards around town.

The reason is an effort by public safety officers -- cops and firefighters -- to wage a public relations battle against city hall.

One tool is the yard signs highly critical of Kasim Reed. The message said the mayor is unconcerned about public safety. The unions drafted that message because they are upset their wages are stagnant, and the rank and file has watched a number of colleagues leave and go to other departments who are paying more.

The unions asked community groups to get the word out about the yard signs and some homeowners are responding.

The residents are frustrated and frightened when they see an uptick in crime -- not just burglaries by also carjackings.

The mayor, for his part, argues his side of the debate is not being told. Reed recounts that when he first came into office, he authorized pay hikes for public safety that did not go to other workers.

Yet, firefighters and police officers complain city hall has failed to keep pace with current conditions and their bills arrive in the mail every month.