Want Stimulus Money? Focus on Jobs

The passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has signaled there will be an increase in campus police resources. Grant writers can create winning grant applications by demonstrating that their proposed programs will help the economy rebound.

H.R. 1 – the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – is now law, and a number of new programs for law enforcement, education and other initiatives have been resurrected or infused with fresh dollars. Some of the new programs have already opened, and application deadlines have come and gone. But other programs and funding are in the works for agencies and entities alike.

Many of these grant programs are going to be tied into the president’s economic recovery program, which has a heavy emphasis on saving and creating employment opportunities. He has taken on an aggressive agenda, stating that his administration will produce or save more than three million jobs – a Herculean task to accomplish in a short four years.

As such, it is important for grant writers in public safety to remember this point if they expect to apply for and gain funding through any of these programs. Grant writers will be forced to rethink their usual needs statement in order to form the proper nexus between the program funding requested and its relationship to either staving off layoffs or creating new jobs.

Force Multiplier Concepts Can be Useful
Some of the ways that this can be accomplished will fall under what is known as “force multipliers”. This means using equipment or innovative programs to increase the efficiency of law enforcement personnel, which saves money for police departments. This allows the department to devote the savings to salaries and benefits.

For instance, the obtaining of in-car video cameras could be related as a force multiplier in that capturing irrefutable video evidence cuts down on overtime expenses. This is accomplished because if video evidence is presented, it leads to more pre-trial plea agreements. It also results in less time spent by an officer for court appearances and testimony in depositions or court hearings. The same could be said for new digital cameras or audio-video surveillance equipment.

In another scenario, a campus law enforcement department might need to obtain a new squad car because the agency’s budget did not allow for its acquisition due to budgetary cuts. If a department does not have adequate cars to deploy its personnel, the budget axe will swing at staffing levels, possibly leading to layoffs. Those personnel may be viewed as unneccesary if they are not on patrol and not performing the primary function they were originally hired to perform.

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