NEWS RELEASE SUMMARY – June 3, 2020
SAN DIEGO – The U.S. Department of Justice yesterday awarded nearly $400 Million for law enforcement hiring to advance community policing, through the Department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) COPS Hiring Program (CHP). The Attorney General announced funding awards to 596 law enforcement agencies across the nation, which allows those agencies to hire 2,732 additional full-time law enforcement professionals.
In the Southern District of California, Chula Vista Police Department will receive $750,000 to fund six officers and the City of Brawley and the La Jolla Band of Indians will each receive $125,000 to fund one officer. “The Department of Justice is committed to providing the police chiefs and sheriffs of our great nation with needed resources, tools, and support. This funding will bolster their ranks and contribute to expanding community policing efforts nationwide,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “A law enforcement agency’s most valuable assets are the men and women who put their lives on the line every day in the name of protecting and serving their communities.”
“Particularly in light of this district’s proximity to the Southwest Border, it is imperative that local police agencies receive the resources they need to maintain safe and secure neighborhoods,” said U.S. Attorney Robert Brewer. “I am pleased that DOJ officials recognized the importance of shoring up staffing in our region by funding eight officers to address critical needs in three area communities.”
The COPS Hiring Program is a competitive award program intended to reduce crime and advance public safety through community policing by providing direct funding for the hiring of career law enforcement officers. In addition to providing financial support for hiring, CHP provides funding to state, local, and tribal law enforcement to enhance local community policing strategies and tactics. In a changing economic climate, CHP funding helps law enforcement agencies maintain sufficient sworn personnel levels to promote safe communities. Funding through this program had been on hold since the spring of 2018 due to a nationwide injunction that was lifted earlier this year.
CHP applicants were required to identify a specific crime and disorder problem focus area and explain how the funding will be used to implement community policing approaches to that problem focus area. Forty-three percent of the awards announced will focus on violent crime, while the remainder of the awards will focus on a variety of issues including school-based policing to fund school resource officer positions, building trust and respect, and opioid education, prevention, and intervention. The COPS Office received nearly 1,100 applications requesting more than 4,000 law enforcement positions.