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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Huntsville police are hoping to launch a new program to keep criminals out of communities. It’s called the Gold Star Property program and if approved would help property owners make changes to keep their properties crime free.

Whether it’s loitering, drugs or violence, HPD hopes to provide answers for struggling communities.

The department is currently awaiting certification for the national Gold Star property program, that has already seen success in 44 states.

“We sent six of our officers to have them certified as instructors, and these instructors will have classes throughout the year to teach apartment managers to keep their properties crime free,” said Captain Mark McMurray.

The changes can be small – like a new coat of paint or trash removal -, or more involved.

“Sometimes management companies overlook the small things, making your property crime free means you need to put the proper locks on doors and windows, proper lighting in the parking lot,  tenants need to sign a crime-free addendum that they will remain crime free, you need to do background checks on your tenants,” explained McMurray.

The program has not officially launched yet, but interested property owners can go ahead and get in line for future classes. The classes are free and are only for owners and managers of multi-family housing properties, like apartment complexes.

All properties who complete the program will be able to advertise as certified Gold Star properties.