Grant program benefits Village of Star PrairieThe Office of Justice Assistance has awarded $314,000 of federal Byrne Justice Assistance grant funds to 53 police and sheriff departments across the state for Smaller Police Agency Crime Initiative grants.
The Office of Justice Assistance has awarded $314,000 of federal Byrne Justice Assistance grant funds to 53 police and sheriff departments across the state for Smaller Police Agency Crime Initiative grants.
Among the grantees is the Village of Star Prairie, who will receive $2,070.
SPACI grant awards were selected to improve officer and public safety, improve communication capacity between departments and improve officer efficiency.
Three demonstration projects to test the applicability of existing technology for law enforcement uses and innovative policing practices also received SPACI grants.
One-hundred and six agencies applied for SPACI grant funds, with funding requests ($860,000) far outpacing the amount of money available ($314,000). Fifty-three agencies received full or partial funding.
Funds will enable small police agencies to purchase items such as: tactical vests and threat plates, ballistic shields, handheld ID scanners, in-car video systems, electronic control devices (Tasers), emergency communication stations for public areas, boosters for radio coverage in rugged terrain and specialized equipment to access remote areas.
Appropriate equipment is necessary regardless of the size of the agency or department. Smaller police agencies—those with twenty or fewer sworn officers—often do not have the economy of scale to absorb capital costs and make investments in needed, but expensive equipment.
Smaller police agencies are also frequently overlooked in many competitive grant opportunities, which may have eligibility or grant criteria that favors larger agencies. The SPACI grant program is designed to provide opportunities for smaller police and sheriff departments to request funding to address their specific department’s needs.
This is the fourth year OJA has offered SPACI grants.