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DeWine bumps up funding to fight violent crime

Gov. Mike DeWine announced Monday that he is increasing the amount of violent crime reduction grant funding available to local law enforcement agencies by $42 million.

The addition increased the total money available to law enforcement through the Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program from $58 million to $100 million.

To date, $28.7 million in grants have been awarded to 99 law enforcement agencies statewide. The next round of grant awards are expected to be announced later this week, according to DeWine’s office.

Earlier this year, the Trumbull County Prosecutor’s Office was awarded a $495,152 grant from the Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program.

The Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office was slated to get $366,800; Niles Police Department, $262,350; and the Jackson Township Police Department, $35,847.

The Warren Police Department and the Northern Ohio Violent Crime Consortium, which includes Youngstown police, also earlier received state violent crime reduction grants. Warren police received $218,344 and the consortium received $130,418.

“Violent crime is spiking nationwide, and, here in Ohio, I want to ensure that our local law enforcement agencies have as much support as possible,” DeWine said. “From new equipment to more staff, we’re giving our agencies the flexibility to use these grants in ways that make the biggest impact on the safety of their communities.”

He made Monday’s funding announcement while visiting the Whitehall Police Department, which is receiving more than $630,000 in violence reduction funds to help it replace aging technology in a dispatch center and maintain reliable emergency services for citizens.

DeWine teamed with the Ohio General Assembly to launch the Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program last year with $8 million from the state’s operating budget and later expanded the program to include $50 million from the American Rescue Plan Act. Because the total amount of grant requests far exceeded $58 million, Monday’s $42 million in additional funding will go toward qualifying requests that have already been submitted. The $42 million is part of the ARPA funding set aside by the governor and Ohio General Assembly specifically for use by law enforcement and other first responders.

Uses for this funding include but are not limited to the creation, implementation and / or expansion of proven or promising violent crime reduction initiatives such as place-network investigations, focused deterrence, hot-spot policing, and crime gun intelligence centers. Grants can also be used for recruitment efforts, retention bonuses, hiring bonuses, payroll costs, technology, equipment, training, technical assistance, analytical tools / support and overtime costs associated with implementing crime reduction strategies.

The grant program is administered by the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services.

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