WEST NEWBURY — The Police Department was one of more than 160 law enforcement agencies across the state to receive federal grant funding intended to provide equipment and strengthen training, as well as support crime prevention and enforcement initiatives.
Police Chief Jeff Durand announced his department was awarded $19,838 for equipment to help identify criminals and bring them to justice.
“We’re going to be getting a LiveScan fingerprint machine with the money,” the chief said. Instead of using traditional fingerprint cards, police will be able to electronically download fingerprints into a database.
“If someone is providing false identification, the person’s true identity is able to be discovered if they are already in the database system,” Durand added.
A total of $7.8 million in federal grant funding was made possible through the Edward J. Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant program and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The program is the leading source of criminal justice funding awarded by the Department of Justice to state and local departments.
Local police departments, sheriffs and the Municipal Police Training Committee received a combined $4.6 million for several needs, including protective equipment and communication infrastructure.
Other area police departments receiving funding include: Haverhill, $12,980, for radar speed signs; Ipswich, $15,000, body worn cameras and a docking station; Merrimac, $31,322, portable radios and accessories; Newburyport, $20,000, body worn cameras; Rowley, $40,000, body worn cameras; Salisbury, $36,970, bulletproof vests and body cameras; and Topsfield, $38,261, LIDAR units, radar and signboard trailers, radar units and radar display.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provided $3.2 million to fund traffic enforcement campaigns, safety equipment and nonenforcement activities by local police. The initiatives aim to reduce vehicle crashes, injuries and deaths.
Area police departments receiving grants are: Amesbury, $19,546; Georgetown, $11,995; Groveland, $11,946 ; Haverhill, $39,931; Ipswich, $20,000; Merrimac; $11,874; Salisbury, $ 11,988; and Topsfield, $11,936.
The Essex County Sheriff’s Department was one of four sheriff’s departments statewide to receive $60,000 in special equipment funding.
The Office of Grants and Research in the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security serves as the administering state agency for federal funding from several sources, including the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Justice and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.