With the economy stagnant and drugs rampant, a number of Vermont communities are reporting an increase in burglaries.
In Dorset, residents are taking action by launching a community policing program to help track crime.
Like many rural towns that have small, seasonal populations, Dorset contracts its police work to the state.
Town Manager Rob Giotti says since the end of April, there’s been a spike in break-ins in Dorset and surrounding towns. There have been more than a dozen incidents so far this year compared to just a handful in 2011.
"The information that we’re getting from the State Police is that they’ve predominantly been second homes," Giotti said. " It’s been jewelry and silver items that have been taken. The transfer station in East Dorset had a report of some scrap metal that was taken."
Giotti says the Vermont State Police have told him the rise in burglaries appears to be drug-related.
Dorset town officials say they’ll hire state police for more patrol hours, and the town is holding a meeting Wednesday about community policing, urging people to lock down their valuables and their homes.
The State Police will be there as well to answer questions and tell residents how they might help with resolving the problem.