Preparing for DNC an 'awesome undertaking' says Charlotte's police chief

By Brigida Mack - bio l email

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - It's six o'clock on a Friday night at Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Chief Rodney Monroe is in yet another meeting about security preparations for the Democratic National Convention.

"This is just you know an awesome undertaking from a lot of people," said Monroe.

The DNC committee announced Tuesday morning Charlotte will be the site of the 2012 convention.

Since then, Chief Monroe has been pulling 14 hour days as he works with local, state and federal agencies to develop plan for the massive convention that will put Charlotte on the national stage for nearly a week next September.

Monroe says it can be daunting to think of the DNC being 18-plus months away.

"We're trying to break it down into one month intervals, 90 days, six months, 12 months right up to game day," he said.

A game day that is sure to go down in the books as a record-maker for the Queen City when you consider all that is involved: hundreds, if not thousands of extra officers will be brought to Charlotte from across the state and country, $50 million in federal money for security and the fact that Chief Monroe has already met with leaders of previous host cities including Denver, CO and Pittsburgh, PA.

He says with the DNC on the horizon, you can never be too prepared.

"You never believe you've done enough," said Monroe. "You never stop thinking about you know what else can be done or what if. You play every scenario through your mind and you try to prepare for every scenario, and just hope that none of them occur."

Chief Monroe also said that security will be stepped up across Charlotte and not just in Center City.

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