FORT SMITH, Ark. (KFSM) — The Fort Smith Police Department has received three new federal grants totaling more than $100,000 to use during the rest of 2019 and into 2020.
The grant monies will go towards protective gear and additional body cameras.
The 2019 Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant, US Department of Justice and the Bureau of Justice Assistance provided a total of $57,770 to the FSPD. The award is part of a 70/30 split with the Sebastian County Sheriff’s Office, alternating each year for the bigger portion.
This year the FSPD will receive the 30% amount of $17,331. The money will be used to purchase vests for narcotics investigators (vests that are ineligible for the Bulletproof Vest Grant) and a mobile fingerprinting station to ease booking prisoners into the Sebastian County Detention Center.
The 2019 DOJ Office of Justice Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant is a 50% match grant for the purchase of body armor for FSPD officers.
The vest costs between $530-$620 each and are required to be replaced every five years. This grant eases the financial burden for the City of Fort Smith for yearly purchases.
Typically, the amount of award is under $10,000, but the department requested and received an increase to $16,444.30 in 2019 due to the number of new officers hired. This is the highest amount the FSPD has ever received.
The 2019 Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance, Body-Worn Camera Police and Implementation Program is a 50% match grant for Body-worn cameras.
The department received a total of $29,014 to use toward the purchase of 20 additional body cameras. The cost to the Department is $29,772 per grant requirement.