STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA) - As the city of Starkville grows in population, officials say the city's public safety operations is striving to achieve excellence.
Recent efforts show the city is setting a high standard when it comes to public safety.
In 2012, Starkville's fire and police departments accomplished their goals.
The fire department reduced its fire rating and the city's police department completed its national accreditation efforts through Commission Accreditation Law Enforcement Agencies.
"It shows an effort from the city's standpoint, the police department [and] the fire department standpoint, where they're making an effort to make the city more safe," Starkville Fire Chief Rodger Mann said. "[It's] a better place for our residents to live."
"It assures that you don't have some of the more typical problems that you hear about," added David Lindley, Police Chief, city of Starkville. "[Such as] lack of accountability or controls or some of the more standard things that people use to stereotypically worry about [with regard to] law enforcement."
Both the police and fire departments end up costing the city the most when it comes to tax dollars, so public safety is a top priority for both municipalities and residents.
"Putting those two together, it says that we have really high quality public safety providers in Mississippi," adds Parker Wiseman, mayor of Starkville. "In fact, it tells you that in Starkville, our public safety providers are performing at a level that can only be matched up in one other place in the state of Mississippi."
With Starkville now being one of two cities in the state of Mississippi where the city's police department is nationally accredited and the city's fire department has a Class Four rating, there are not only financial benefits for businesses that are located inside the city, but also quality of life benefits for residents of Starkville.
"Business does better and residential growth happens in places where public safety is at a premium," added Wiseman.
As the city's fire department moves forward with the process of going to a Class Three rating, the city's police department will operate at its highest level with a follow-up inspection to come in the future.
"You have to be re-examined every three years to make sure you are still in compliance with all these standards and requirements," added Lindley.
With both safety services staying in top-notch form, city officials say that translates to the public being in good hands.
Mississippi State University's Police Department is accredited at the national level and the Oktibbeha County Sheriff's Department is accredited at the state level.
With all major law enforcement agencies accredited, that area is the only region in the state that can make that claim.