Mayor Rob Rappold announced today that the City of Beckley has just received an award through the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) to hire five (5) additional full-time law enforcement professionals for the Beckley Police Department. This grant is providing the City of Beckley with $625,000 for 75 percent salary reimbursement over a three year period for the hiring of these additional five (5) officers.
The COPS Hiring Grant is a competitive award program intended to reduce crime and advance public safety through community policing by providing direct funding for the hiring of career law enforcement officers. In our changing economic climate, the grand funding will help the Beckley Police Department enhance policing strategies and tactics and goes a long way in providing extra personnel to conduct proactive patrols and engage in more positive interactions with our community. The additional officers were obtained to allow the Beckley Police Department to implement community policing approaches to address specific crime and problem areas with additional resources.
Mayor Rappold stated, “The grant award has come at an excellent time because we are holding our police officer hiring test at the end of this month. With the application and training process taking at least one year before an officer can be released on their own, this funding could not have come at a better time.” Mayor Rappold went on to say, “We see crime issues which arise with direct correlation to the drug epidemic that has swept across our nation and devastated local communities. Additionally the importance of enhancing our police – community relations is on the forefront of importance and having the increased resources will allow us to focus on these priority areas.”