MERCER COUNTY Grant to fund more patrols in cities' high-crime areas

Commissioners gave their approval to a firm to design the county's prison.
MERCER, Pa. -- County commissioners have approved an application for a "weed and seed" grant from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency with Sharon and Farrell.
District Attorney James Epstein said the grant would provide money for increased patrols in high-crime areas of Sharon and Farrell and encourage renewal of these areas.
He said the required local share will include some money seized in drug trafficking cases, which the law requires to be used on drug enforcement.
Other business: Commissioners also approved the Mercer County Prison Board's hiring of L. Robert Kimball & amp; Associates of State College to design a 266-bed county prison.
Commissioners also approved several contracts to provide respite services for Mental Health/Mental Retardation clients.
They authorized the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy to prepare a Natural Heritage Inventory, which would identify unique natural areas and resources in the county.
Funding will come from the state and from the conservancy.
They approved agreements between the Intermediate Punishment Program and the County Behavioral Health Commission and with UPMC Horizon, Greenville, for services to offenders through the Restrictive Intermediate Punishment Program.
Compensation will be $3,510 monthly up to $38,612 for the BHC for management and assessment services until the end of the year and $18,072 monthly until the end of the year for UPMC drug and alcohol treatment.

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