Santa Clarita City Council members voted Tuesday to accept a $24,219 federal grant from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant program to “enhance existing law enforcement, advance community policing efforts to help reduce crime, address quality-of-life issues, and safeguard public safety,” in Santa Clarita, according to a city staff report.
As technology advances, law enforcement agencies try to have technology-advanced equipment readily available to help prevent and control crime, including at the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station.
Every year, the City Council has approved the Byrne grant funding for the SCV Sheriff’s Station to use, most of which has gone for the purchase of technology-advanced equipment.
“The city, along with the state, has been great about supporting us with the JAG program funding,” said Lt. John Lecrivain of the SCV Sheriff’s Station. “Without it, we wouldn’t be able to get the equipment that (the station) uses.”
This fiscal year, the local Sheriff’s Station received a portion of $77.6 million from the federal program, which money is allocated by using a formula based on each city’s share of the total violent crimes reported by the state.
The program offers agencies to support a variety of activities and use JAG funds “based on their own state and local needs and conditions,” according to the U.S. Dept. of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance.
The latest Byrne grant dollars will cover purchases to improve traffic safety and enforcement, less-than-lethal intervention tools and enhance deputies’ active shooter training.
“While we’ve had this training for years at the station, grant funding will help enhance equipment that will allow us to have different scenarios, as well as purchase less-than-lethal equipment to potentially help us with incidents,” said Lecrivain.
Other purchases include handheld laser/lidar units, digital cameras, Pepperball Launcher platforms and protective gear, according to the city staff report.
Over the past recent years, the city has typically been awarded more than $20,000 and has purchased technology to improve traffic, such as electronic ticket writers and instruments to help in recovering stolen vehicles.