(WILLARD, Ohio) – Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced today that he is awarding $8.5 million to 21 local law enforcement agencies to help them strategically combat violence in their communities.
Governor DeWine announced the seventh round of recipients to receive grant funds as part of his Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program while visiting Willard this afternoon. The Willard Police Department is receiving a grant of $393,097.78 to maintain its workforce and to attract and retain new officers with hiring and retention bonuses.
“Many law enforcement agencies across Ohio are facing an increase in resignations and a decrease in new applicants to fill those vacant positions, which has a direct impact on the safety of their communities," said Governor DeWine. “I am committed to supporting agencies that need help filling their ranks so that they can effectively protect their citizens and themselves."
Since the launch of the Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program in April, Governor DeWine has awarded $37.2 million to 119 Ohio law enforcement agencies to help them prevent and investigate violent crime through new and enhanced anti-violence programs and improved staffing levels. Governor DeWine will award approximately $100 million to local law enforcement agencies in total.
“This grant couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Willard Police Chief Shannon Chaffins. “This will make a huge difference to an agency of our size in retaining our seasoned officers and attracting new candidates.”
Other agencies receiving grants as part of the seventh round of the Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program include:
The Bexley Police Department (Franklin County) will receive $239,628.18 to upgrade its portable radios to eliminate dropped calls and improve communication with neighboring police departments.
The Boardman Police Department (Mahoning County) will receive $628,358.56 to buy ballistic panels and shields, initiate more human trafficking investigations, link victims of crime to available services, and pay for overtime expenses.
The Crawford County Prosecutor’s Office will receive $215,217.68 to hire a criminal investigator to assist local law enforcement agencies with case investigations.
The Garfield Heights Police Department (Cuyahoga County) will receive $1,311,936.82 for advanced crime analysis and new technology to help identify repeat offenders and hotspots for crime.
The Grove City Division of Police (Franklin County) will receive $421,200 for technology to capture real-time data to better target problem areas in the city.
The Groveport Police Department (Franklin County) will receive $69,219.46 to deploy technology in high crime areas to more easily identify suspects responsible for acts of violence.
The Orange Village Police Department (Cuyahoga County) will receive $239,689.39 to help gain leads using new technology to identify, apprehend, and prosecute criminal offenders.
The Warren Police Department (Trumbull County) will receive $237,326 to upgrade the mobile forensic capabilities of its Criminal Intelligence Unit to reduce the time it takes to provide investigators with crucial digital evidence. The upgrade will also drastically decrease the number of mobile devices sent to outside agencies for analysis.
In addition, the following entities will also each receive grants to pay for retention and/or hiring bonuses to help maintain current law enforcement staffing levels, recruit new officers, and continue ongoing public safety services to prevent and investigate violent crime.
- Allen County Sheriff's Office: $294,781.80
- Bethel Police Department (Clermont County): $111,556.36
- Crestline Police Department (Crawford County): $343,149.66
- Henry County Sheriff's Office: $194,985.25
- Kent State University Police Services (Portage County): $296,982.40
- Silver Lake Police Department (Summit County): $53,935.24
- South Euclid Police Department (Cuyahoga County): $382,430.34
- Strongsville Police Department (Cuyahoga County): $1,620,514.87
- Twinsburg Police Department (Summit County): $909,502.60
- Upper Arlington Division of Police (Franklin County): $393,366.04
- Willoughby Police Department (Lake County): $4,280
- Wilmington Police Department (Clinton County): $194,759.20
Governor DeWine, in partnership with the Ohio General Assembly, created the Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program last year to give local law enforcement additional tools to address violence, including increases in crime associated with law enforcement retirements and resignations.
The program is funded through both the state operating budget and with American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds that Governor DeWine and the Ohio General Assembly have dedicated to first responders to counter various pressing issues exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, including violent crime. The grants announced today are all funded through ARPA.
The program is administered by the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services within the Ohio Department of Public Safety.
Other assistance for first responders developed by the DeWine-Husted Administration include the creation of the Ohio Narcotics Intelligence Center, Ohio School Safety Center, Ohio Office of Law Enforcement Recruitment, Ohio Office of First Responder Wellness, Ohio Prisoner Extradition Reimbursement Program, Ohio Body-Worn Camera Grant Program, Ohio Ballistics Testing Initiative, Ohio Crime Lab Efficiency Program, Ohio First Responder Recruitment, Retention, and Resilience Program, Ohio Court Backlog Reduction Program, and the new eWarrant database.