MCSO hopes to beef up staffing with federal grants

Tom Sheahan

Tom Sheahan

KINGMAN - Local law enforcement agencies are hoping for a slice of the federal stimulus pie.

According to the Department of Justice Web site, Arizona is expected to get around $42 million in stimulus funding for state and local law enforcement. Around $25 million will be distributed to state law enforcement offices. The remaining amount, around $17 million, will be given to local law enforcement agencies.

Mohave County Sheriff Tom Sheahan confirmed that his office has filed applications for an estimated $275,000 from the Community Oriented Policing Services grant.

If the applications are approved, the funds will pay for the hiring and salary of two deputies and three detention officers for three years. No local matching funds are required.

However, once those three years are up, MCSO will have to keep those officers on staff and pay for them out of its own budget.

"If there are funding dollars available and we feel we can use them, we will apply for grants," Sheahan said. "We are hoping that the economy becomes better in the next few years."

The Kingman Police Department has also applied for grant money from the COPS and the Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant program.

The JAG program provides funds for law enforcement, prosecution, court, crime prevention, education, corrections, community, drug treatment, drug enforcement, planning, evaluation, training, technology, crime victim and witness programs.

KPD is hoping to get around $57,000 from JAG for new radios and radar equipment. The department has also filed an application for funding for one additional officer through COPS.

The department expects to find out in the next few weeks whether it will receive the funding, said Sgt. Bob Fisk. The department has already made several cuts in order to protect public safety.

"We are trying to do everything we can to avoid cutting personnel," he said.

According to DOJ, Bullhead City Police Department has applied for $82,515 and Lake Havasu City has applied for $69,800 from the JAG program.

The federal government announced the allocation of $2 billion in stimulus funding for the JAG program and increased funding for COPS by $1 billion on March 6.

To track where federal stimulus money is going, visit www.recovery.gov.