This topic will cover a variety of points and serve as a general "end of year message" for the faction, concluding the year of 2018. The following topics will be discussed:
- 1. End of Year Message
2. Faction Survey Summary
3. Faction OOC Award Results
The year of 2018 has been a very interesting and revolutionary year for the faction. The faction has changed more over the past twelve months than it has in the past ten years of its existence. I can say with utmost confidence that nearly every nook and cranny of the faction has been examined and improved in at least one regard during this period.
When I was appointed Sheriff roughly a year ago, I set out the parameters for where the faction would be going. The foremost element of that was striving to provide the best and most enjoyable roleplay to both the general server population and the faction's members themselves constantly. The initial response to these changes was not amicable. Several persons resigned and others expressed frustration at the speed at which changes were being implemented. Those first few months were the most formative and difficult in the past year.
That being said, I am very happy with the progress made over the past year. Our faction is now renowned across the server for the efforts we have made to embrace realism and provide the best experiences we can. This progress would not have been possible without the continued efforts and patience of every single member of the faction. From the Executive Staff team to every Deputy Sheriff Trainee, the progress we have made is a token we can all stake claim to.
We will continue into 2019 with this same message. We will continue to seek the best of the best from ourselves and strive to maintain the faction's reputation and provide enjoyable experiences to every person we encounter. I would like to thank everyone who has, is, and will join our faction to take part in this amazing faction we have created.
2. Faction Survey Summary
Earlier in December, we issued a Google Forms survey for the entire faction to fill out (anonymously, should they have chosen) and return to provide feedback on where the faction is going and what they would like to see done. The results of this survey are as follows:
- Faction Activity
Several members expressed concern that the faction is not active at all times of the day (especially pre-peak time.) This is a very valid concern that we are working on by continual recruitment to keep the faction's numbers bolstered. Thanks to a great number of reforms recently conducted in the Training Bureau, we are able to churn out, train, and graduate new members of the faction at an unprecedented rate. We will continue to attempt to recruit.
That being said, an active faction requires teamwork. If there aren't a lot of people in-game, try to get some of your friends to log in and go on duty with you. The more people that show up, the better. In order to assist with our activity on your part, you should encourage your friends to go in-game whenever you do and work together to ensure that everyone is enjoying their experience in-game.
As December has gone on, our faction's activity has improved greatly. We are a far cry from certain instances in the summer where activity was nearly non-existent during even peak time. I am proud of the progress we have made in this regard and we will do our best to keep this momentum rolling.
Several members expressed concern with the harshness of the scrutiny applied during our recruitment process. While I do understand how some people may feel, I personally believe that high scrutiny will end in the best results for our faction. The reason we apply so much scrutiny during our recruitment process is two-fold: first, we believe our faction should be staffed with trustworthy and competent roleplayers we can trust to offer the best roleplay possible and give the best impression to the server. Secondly, as a police faction, we are some of the most routine and common encounters new players will have on the server. As such, we should strive to be good examples of realistic roleplay to these new members. Lowering our recruitment standards would run in contrast with these points and lead to an overall decrease in the faction's quality. We firmly believe in the age-old adage, quality is better than quantity.
Several members expressed concern with the amount/complexity of paperwork required in the faction. I would like to state for the record that no paperwork is ever "required" until a member reaches the position of Field Training Officer. Even then, FTOs are only required to submit Daily Observation Reports for trainees they conduct field training patrols. No other paperwork in the faction is required from regular field staff personnel. This, of course, bars special assignments that have management positions (e.g. Master Field Training Officers are expected to assist with managing FTP.)
That being said, we are actively working to get formatting tools up to assist with making formats easier and quicker to use. A great thanks to Aiden_Marshall for his work on his formatting tool is owed in this regard.
Abbreviations of Policy Manuals
Several members expressed concern with the length of the full Manual of Policy and Procedure and believed a more abbreviated, easier-to-access version should be created to assist with quicker reference of actual policy you use and encounter in-game. I wholeheartedly agree with this and work on a revitalized Sheriff's Reference Book, which will include summaries of commonly-used policies, will begin shortly. The main Manual of Policy and Procedure will remain for reference and members will still be expected to be remotely familiar with the contents of the MPP.
Several members expressed the desire for monthly publications to return. Since receiving these survey results, we have opened dialogue in Command Staff to discuss the feasibility of returning a monthly publication. We have agreed that, given the way the faction functions, a bi-monthly publication would be much easier to maintain than a monthly publication. The core issue is ensuring that there is enough interesting content in these publications so that they are actually read. We believe doing bi-monthly issues would give plenty of interesting material to use for these publications.
The first issue of this publication can be expected in the first quarter of 2019.
3. Faction OOC Awards Results
A tradition of the faction for many years has been to have an awards vote at the end of the year. Throughout several years, these events were taken both in character and out of character. The main difference this year is that the in character portion of the awards has been severed entirely. Last year's ceremony proved painstakingly awkward when announcing who had, on an in character basis, been voted the "worst driver" in the entire Department, or who was the "best marksman" — we have decided it is best to hold these awards on an entirely out of character basis.
I'd like to thank Azuko for his time in maintaining the Google Forms survey for these awards.
Throughout the roughly four-day voting period, 42 responses were received. The results are as such:
- FAVORITE EXECUTIVE STAFF MEMBER — EZIO POLDILOTTA
With 23 votes (65%), I am humbled and honored by my selection as the favorite Executive Staff member. That being said, I can't help but thank the other members of Executive Staff who have helped so much. A big thanks to those Executive Staff members throughout the year:
- Beau Westerland (Jonesy) — currently a member of the faction as a Reserve Deputy Sheriff
Darragh McLenaghan (Paddy) — resigned in October. I'd like to particularly thank Paddy for crucial assistance during the first several months of my tenure.
Paul Rexford (Lemon) — currently Assistant Sheriff overseeing SOD
Mike Gaston (Toretto) — currently Assistant Sheriff overseeing POD/DD
With 7 votes (21%), Nicholas Armando (Azuko) has edged out a plurality as the favorite Command Staff member. Azuko is currently the Captain overseeing Santa Clara Valley Station, a position he has held since August. Azuko in particular has helped immensely with both the faction-wide survey and these faction awards.
That being said, a close runner-up with 6 votes (18%) was Terence Fowler (Anselmi). Anselmi started out the year as the Captain for Santa Clara Valley Station, before promoting to Commander as the Executive Administrative Aide to the Sheriff in June — a position he holds to this day. I thank Anselmi in particular for his great advice and profound dedication to his current position.
Every Command Staff member does a great amount of work for the faction, however. This work does not go unnoticed and, without our Command Staff, our faction would not function nearly as well as it does. I personally thank every member of Command Staff for their continued dedication and effort to the faction.
FAVORITE SUPERVISOR — AIDEN WALTON/SAMUEL WYNFORD
With 7 votes each (22%), Aiden Walton and Samuel Wynford have both edged out a tie as the favorite Supervisor. Aiden Walton is currently a supervisor at Santa Clara Valley Station and also assists with various other bureaus. Samuel Wynford is currently a supervisor at East Los Santos Station and is also billeted as the Assistant Commander of the Traffic Services Detail.
Every Supervisory Staff member of this faction sacrifices a lot of effort by offering their personal time. Any person who has been a supervisor knows how much personal effort goes into attempting to manage situations in-game and play the endless game of resource management that being a field supervisor encompasses. I thank each and every member of Supervisory Staff for their time.
FAVORITE FIELD DEPUTY — AIDEN MARSHALL
In a very tight contest with 21 candidates (!!), Aiden Marshall has edged out a plurality with 4 votes (14%) as the favorite Field Deputy. Aiden Marshall has been a field staff member since reinstating in February. Aiden Marshall is an unmistakable presence in the air, spending most of his time on-duty flying for the Aero Bureau and providing crucial assistance during pursuits and other critical incidents. His effort and dedication toward Aero Bureau are very admirable. And beyond that, he is currently working diligently on a formatting tool to assist with various reports members of the faction and various bureaus have to complete. Congratulations again to Aiden Marshall!
Every Field Staff member contributes much to this faction by their simple presence in-game. Field Staff members are unmistakably the backbone of the faction and provide the most visible element of the faction to members of the community. Without Field Staff, the efforts of all other staff groups would be in vain. I thank each and every Field Staff member for offering their time to our faction.
BEST DRIVER — JOSHUA WEATHERS/JOSHUA MATTHEWS/DEREK INMAN/NATHAN HAWKINS
In a very, very tight contest with 24 (!!!) candidates, Joshua Weathers, Joshua Matthews, Derek Inman, and Nathan Hawkins have secured a 4-way tie with 2 votes (7%) each. I think it's safe to say most of the faction is confident in our driving abilities. Congratulations again to the four winners.
WORST DRIVER — RAY HOWLAND
In a wide-ranging contest with 21 candidates (!!), Ray Howland (Mercer) has edged out a plurality of 4 votes (14%) to earn the dubious honor of Worst Driver. The owners of Pay and Sprays throughout the community can rest assured knowing we have Ray Howland on patrol.
BEST UPDATER — AIDEN WALTON
With 9 votes (29%), Aiden Walton has talked his way into the Best Updater slot. A constant fixture in the skies with Aero Bureau, Aiden Walton provides crystal clear updates during pursuits and other critical incidents.
His runner-up, Aiden Marshall, came in with 7 votes (22%) is a given considering his notoriety for being in the skies. Both are very skilled pilots and updaters and we are better for having them to cover us.
WORST UPDATER — MARK TANNER/ANTHONY LEONETTI/LESLIE ARSEID/WALTER SEWIN/AIDEN WALTON
With 2 votes (8%) each, Mark Tanner, Anthony Leonetti, Leslie Arseid, Walter Sewin, and Aiden Walton have stammered into the slot of Worst Updater. With such a varied field of winners, we can do nothing but wish them congratulations and the best of luck in getting backup during their next pursuit.
BEST MARKSMAN — JOSHUA WEATHERS
With 13 votes (39%), Joshua Weathers has blew through to grab the title of Best Marksman. Joshua Weathers' marksmanship skill has not gone unnoticed throughout the faction. We congratulate him and hope God has mercy on those who try to duel him.
WORST MARKSMAN — COLIN TENNYSON
With 6 votes (24%), Colin Tennyson has missed his way into the title of Worst Marksman. Colin Tennyson's uncanny ability to miss the broad side of a barn has grown fame. We congratulate him and wish him the best luck in his future shootouts — he's going to need it.
BEST CHANGE — /CARSIGN CHANGE
With 15 votes (55%), the changes to /carsign have been chosen as the best change throughout the faction for the year of 2018. A very recent innovation, the change of our /carsign format stemmed from the fact that /carsign should represent what is visible on a cruiser. I am glad to know that this change has received such widespread support.
A distant runner-up, the station system still being implemented achieved 6 votes (22%) in this contest. The station system has been a constant work in progress since March of this year. The station system has vastly improved the faction's structure and added more realism to the way we roleplay our faction. As we have finally received the hard mapping needed for both stations, I am confident that this system will be fully completed in the first quarter of 2019.
FAVORITE ELS SUPERVISOR — SAMUEL WYNFORD
With 9 votes (31%), Samuel Wynford has been voted Favorite ELS Supervisor. I congratulate him on his achievement. I also congratulate runner-up Derek Inman, who won 8 votes (27%) for a very close second place finish.
FAVORITE SCV SUPERVISOR — AIDEN WALTON
With 11 votes (37%), Aiden Walton has been voted Favorite SCV Supervisor. I congratulate Walton on a resounding victory in this category. I also congratulate runner-up Caleb Watts, who achieved 6 votes (20%) in this contest.
FAVORITE ELS DEPUTY — CODY PRUETT
With 4 votes (14%), Cody Pruett has emerged from a wide field of 19 candidates as the Favorite ELS Deputy. Congratulations also to Buck Oakley, who won 3 votes (11%.)
FAVORITE SCV DEPUTY — GARY SINES/SHAWN FAUCHER
With 3 votes each (13%), Gary Sines and Shawn Faucher have entered a tie for Favorite SCV Deputy. Congratulations to both for their accomplishment.
FAVORITE DETECTIVE DIVIISON MEMBER — JESSE ARSENAULT
With 9 votes (33%), Jesse Arsenault has won the Favorite Detective Division Member category. Congratulations to Arsenault and I would like to thank him for his time dedicated into the Detective Division. I would also like to congratulate runner-up Richard Perkins, who won 7 votes (25%), for his close second place finish.
FAVORITE SEB MEMBER — JOSHUA WEATHERS
With 6 votes (18%), Joshua Weathers has won Favorite SEB Member. Congratulations to Weathers for his dedication to SEB. I'd also like to congratulate close runner-up Samuel Wynford, who won 5 votes (15%.)
- Beau Westerland (Jonesy) — currently a member of the faction as a Reserve Deputy Sheriff
Onward to 2019.