The Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPPS) has awarded the City of Haverhill $437,385 in municipal police grants.
The municipal police grant program provides targeted assistance to larger communities in Massachusetts whose municipal budgets need extra support to improve public safety and increase police resources. The purpose of the grants is to offset the impact of any potential funding cuts that came about as a result of the worldwide economic crisis that had great impacts on state and municipal budgets, according to state Rep. Brian S. Dempsey, chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means, Senator Kathleen O’Connor Ives, Rep. Linda Dean Campbell, Rep. Diana Dizoglio and Mayor James Fiorentini.
“This grant will allow the Haverhill Police Department to maintain staffing levels in order to protect the people of the City as well as the officers themselves,” said Dempsey. “A well-maintained and staffed department is a key component of promoting public safety in Haverhill.”
Funds provide direct assistance to local law enforcement to promote efficiencies and enhanced crime management techniques. Grant eligibility is determined by a number of factors including a municipality’s crime rate, the number of calls for service per capita in a municipality, the percent of staff positions that are currently unfunded and the percent of the police department’s budget that was lost since fiscal year 2009 when the economic crisis and subsequent recession began.
Mayor James J. Fiorentini said, “We appreciate the continued support from Representative Dempsey, this money will help us continue the progress that the police have made in some of our more challenging neighborhoods. Our goal is to add at least two more patrol officers to the streets and continue the momentum of keeping crime down in our city.”
Haverhill Police Chief Alan DeNaro also thanked Dempsey.
“Chairman Dempsey is one of Public Safety’s strongest supporters in the legislature. If not for his tireless efforts in championing for crime reduction programs like the Municipal Staffing Grant our crime rate in Haverhill would be on the rise in contrast to the 13% reduction we are currently experiencing in 2014. Proactively putting additional officers on the street has proven to positively impact the quality of life for our communities.