TOPS Public Safety Program
Beginning April 4, 2010, a new
public-private partnership between Orange County Government, the Orange County
Sheriff’s Office and the International Drive Business Improvement District was
launched.This prototype program has
provided for an increased law enforcement presence that has enabled the tourist
corridor to maintain its strong reputation in the travel industry as a safe
experience for visitors, employees and residents.
The Tourist Oriented
Policing Squad (TOPS) program is the result of a grant issued to Orange
County through the U.S. Department of Justice stimulus program.
- Orange County partnered with the I-Drive
District and its dedicated funding source, to commit to the required four-year
- Funding for the first four years of the program
came from a combination of the COPS grant and a special assessment that I-Drive
Business Improvement District.
- The safety initiative provides enhanced services
to the 7.7 million overnight visitors each year and the more than 75,000
employees who work in the area.
followed the highly successful International Drive District off duty program that was implemented in 2008.
100% of the funding for TOPS is contributed from the International Drive
Business Improvement District special assessment program.
The TOPS program allows for
enhanced coverage of International Drive that is located within the
unincorporated area of Orange County for the I-Drive
District master taxing unit.
- The unincorporated area covers over 4,500 acres
including the Orange County Convention Center, 46,000 room accommodations, attractions,
entertainment, dining, shopping and residential.
- This proactive approach to public safety means an increased presence
of bike patrols, marked cars and officers on foot throughout the area.Additionally, experienced deputies are
assigned to these special squads who have been specifically trained for the
- Addressing the needs of meeting attendees,
tourists and area employees, the TOPS program provides an increase in deputies
that enables increased tracking of activity throughout the District program
boundaries.Deputies have direct contact
with I-Drive businesses, visitors, employees and residents.These dedicated squads provide flexible
coverage which allows for quick response when needed.
businesses benefit from increased communication with the deputies.Educational seminars, crime prevention
training are offered as well as safety assessments for individual businesses.