KOB examines city report

Posted at: 12/05/2012 10:15 PM
Updated at: 12/05/2012 10:21 PM
By: Danielle Todesco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The City of Albuquerque has released a progress report called Snapshot 2012. It was compiled by a group of local residents who formed the Indicators Progress Commission.

KOB Eyewitness News 4 is digging deeper into the report, dissecting where the City did well, and three areas where the City doesn't look so good.

In Albuquerque, property crime is down, but violent crime is up. We also looked at high school graduation rates. Plus, we looked at the numbers for Albuquerque's population with sexually transmitted diseases. Out of seven cities, we were rated the worst.

The report said that for every 100,000 people in Albuquerque, 740 have STD's. That meant a red light in their grading system. The report said we are undesirable in that area, and need focus. But Dan Burke with the New Mexico Health Department said the report is misleading.

"It's alarming and it doesn't necessarily reflect reality very accurately," Burke said.

Burke admitted Bernalillo County is very high in Chlamydia cases. He said the County is around third in the nation. It is a very common disease, but very treatable. And Burke said we are much lower with the more serious STD's like Gonorrhea and Syphilis.

"You're really lumping together apples and oranges," Burke said.

Another red light from the report was for high school graduation rates. Only 63 percent of Albuquerque students are finishing. That is second worst in the nation. KOB spoke to Albuquerque Public Schools Spokesperson Monica Armenta about those numbers last week.

"When you see that you had improvement at 12 of the 17 high schools, sure we absolutely still have a four-year graduation of 63 percent," Armenta said. "But it's slowly but surely climbing."

Albuquerque gets another red light for violent crime. The report said there were more than 750 violent crimes per 100,000 people. But the overall picture for public safety was a yellow light, meaning positive progress.

"We have to make sure we're pushing the envelope," City of Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry said. "That we're continuing to work with our neighborhoods, with our police department, be smart about how we police."

There is some good news in the report. Albuquerque was rated as having educated and literate residents. Also, compared to other similar cities, Albuquerque residents exercise more often.

The view the full report, click here.