Sheriff's Office Gets $1 Million Federal Grant For Hiring 8 New School Resource Officers

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Hamilton County Sheriff's Office has been awarded a $1 million grant that will allow the hiring of eight new School Resource Officers, officials said.

The funding will pay for the SROs for three years with the requirement that the county pick up the cost for a fourth year.

There are currently 16 SROs funded through the sheriff's budget and the city and the county schools provide two each for a total of 20.

Sheriff Jim Hammond has said he wants the SROs added at the lower grade levels and not just in the high schools.

The grant covers full salaries as well as equipment.

He said before the grant is accepted the County Commission would need to agree to fund the fourth year of the program. He said there would no be obligation on the part of the county after that.

Sheriff Hammond said the county had requested $1.4 million. 

In announcing the COPS grants, Attorney General Eric Holder said, “In the wake of past tragedies, it's clear that we need to be willing to take all possible steps to ensure that our kids are safe when they go to school. These critical investments represent the Justice Department's latest effort to strengthen key law enforcement capabilities, and to provide communities with the resources they need to protect our young people. Especially in a time of increased challenges and limited budgets, our top priority must always be the safety and well-being of our children.” 

Overall the COPS Office funded awards to 263 cities and counties, aimed at creating 937 law enforcement positions.  More than $125 million will be awarded nationally, including nearly $45 million to fund 356 new school resource officer positions.
 
U.S. Attorney Bill Killian said, “Keeping our children safe when they go to school is of critical importance and I am pleased to join the Attorney General and the COPS Office in announcing these grants which will help provide our communities with the resources needed to accomplish this vital mission.”
 
“The COPS Office is pleased to assist local law enforcement agencies throughout the country address their most critical public safety issues,” said Joshua Ederheimer, acting director of the COPS Office.  “Funding from this year’s program will allow many cities and counties to apply new sworn personnel to issues related to violent crime, property crime, and school safety.”
 
The COPS Hiring Program offers grants to state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to hire or rehire community policing officers.  The program provides the salary and benefits for officer and deputy hires for three years.
 
Grantees for the 2013 hiring program were selected based on their fiscal needs, local crime rates, and their community policing plans.  There was an additional focus this year on agencies requesting assistance in developing school safety programs that would include the hiring of a school resource officer.  School resource officer positions funded by the COPS Office are sworn law enforcement positions that work within a school district or facility, interacting directly with school administrators and students.   
 

The COPS Office is a federal agency responsible for advancing community policing nationwide.  Since 1995, COPS has awarded over $14 billion to advance community policing, including grants awarded to more than 13,000 state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies to fund the hiring and redeployment of approximately 125,000 officers and provide a variety of knowledge resource products including publications, training, and technical assistance.

Grants in East Tennessee also included $112,282 to the city of Clinton and $439,077 to the Johnson City Bureau of Police.


Elderly Man Escapes House Fire; Home A Complete Loss

An elderly man escaped from his burning home Wednesday afternoon without injury. At  2 p.m. , a 911 call was made reporting a fire at 1929 Bice Road. The Dallas Bay Volunteer Fire Department responded and arrived on the scene reporting a fully-involved house fire. The Dallas Bay VFD requested a mutual aid response for additional manpower and apparatus. ... (click for more)

County Schools Dipping Into Fund Balance By $5.3 Million To Fix Several Leaking School Roofs, Upgrade Phone, Intercom Systems, Put HVAC Controls At Wolftever Elementary

County School officials said they plan to dip into the fund balance to fix leaking roofs at several schools and to spend $120,000 for HVAC controls at Wolftever Elementary School. The roofs will cost $1.6 million at Hunter Middle, $125,000 at Lookout Valley Middle/High, $900,000 at Soddy Middle, $400,000 at Tyner and $720,000 at Wallace A. Smith School. Officials said, "In ... (click for more)

Slaxxon Regret - And Response

Back in the seventies my three oldest brothers had a buddy named Steve Slack. “Slack” was a star soccer player at Baylor and he grew up on Lookout Mountain, which is where I grew up. He and Jimmy, Henry and Bill went to the University of Virginia where they were roommates in an old, beat up house that was painted pink. Naturally, the place became known as the “Pink Palace” but lest ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: OK, Sis, Off You Go

I’ve got to do something to adjust my sense of humor but fear there is not a big enough wrench. Rasmea Yousef Odeh, who is a naturalized American citizen from Jordan, was one of the principal figures in January’s Women’s March on Washington and had an equal starring role in the most recent “Day Without Women” protests in America. I’m all for equal rights for women yet I was appalled ... (click for more)

It's Official: UTC's Matt McCall Hired by UMass

. "Matt McCall is a rising star in college basketball coaching who has been a key piece of three successful programs in his career." UMass Athleitcs Director Ryan Bamford     Matt McCall, the UTC men's basketball coach the past two years, has been hired today as the new UMass head men's basketballl coach.   University of Massachusetts Director ... (click for more)

Bradley Holds Off Ooltewah 3-2 In District 5-3A Play

Before this season Bradley Central’s Colton Cross had not pitched since the eighth grade. Now, the senior right-hander has found his niche as a reliever with the Bears’ baseball team. That's in addition to being the Bears' starting second baseman. Cross entered Tuesday’s District 5-3A game against Ooltewah in the seventh with Bradley nursing a shaky one-run lead. ... (click for more)