U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder chose Philadelphia as the place to announce 220 cities and counties are receiving federal grants for new police officers. Philadelphia, Chicago and Los Angeles are getting the most new recruits.
The Community Oriented Policing Services Office or COPS program is paying to hire 600 new officers and allowing 200 more not to be laid off. The new hires will have to be veterans who have served since the September 11th attacks.
Attorney General Eric Holder says the $111 million is an important investment in the country at a time when budgets are tight.
“Last year thousands of officers were laid off and due to budget shortfalls, thousands of positions could not be filled,” said Holder. “In total 85 percent of all law enforcement agencies reported cuts.”
Philadelphia is receiving $3.1 million over three years — enough for 25 officers. Mayor Michael Nutter says his administration worked hard to get the funding
As president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Nutter says cities need this kind of partnership.
“We’re partnering because we understand that violence affects not just the individuals, not just the families, not just the victims, but public safety in general education, health economic competitiveness and the quality of life in our cities,” said Nutter.
Chester Police Commissioner Joseph Bail says for a small force, the grant is vital.
“This will actually increase our department, by another five men and at the point now we only have 101 men this is a significant influx of manpower,” said Bail.
In New Jersey, Trenton will get a dozen new officers and Atlantic City will get 15.
Noticeably off the list is Camden which in January 2011 laid off nearly half its police force.
That’s because Camden has received COPS grants in the past to bring its force back to near where it had been.
Among the federal COPS awards are:
Dagsboro Police Department — $125,000, 1 officer
Milford Police Department — $125,000, 1 officer
Wyoming Police Department — $105,878, 1 officer
Atlantic City — $1,875,000, 15 officers
Bayonne Police Department — $1,125,000, 9 officers
Bridgeton City — $375,000, 3 officers
Haledon Borough — $121,464, 1 officer
Hamilton Township — $512,042, 2 officers
Jersey City — $1,875,000, 15 officers
Newfield Borough — $125,000, 1 offficer
Trenton — $3,018,720, 12 officers
Wildwood Police Department — $432,232, 2 officers
Aliquippa City — $107,137, 1 officer
Chester Police Department — $625,000, 5 officers
Philadelphia Police Department — $3,125,000, 25 officers
Pittsburgh — $1,448,489, 13 officers