Justice Assistance Grants and Homeland Security dollars
Justice Assistance Grants (JAG) offer one of the largest sources of grant funding to support equipment purchases. Most tactical and special operations equipment and gear are eligible items under this program.
Many local municipalities across the country receive a local JAG allocation directly from the federal government based on their share of their state’s three-year violent crime average.
Each state and U.S. territory also receives an annual JAG award for competitive funding that is available to local and state agencies that don’t qualify for the local allocations. Reach out to your State Administering Agency (SAA) representative to discuss your needs and inquire about the next application period.
Homeland Security Grants can be used to fund a variety of specialized gear, equipment and vehicles, if you use the equipment to respond to domestic or international terrorism events or other crimes that threaten your community. Most of these federal grants are received through your state’s homeland security or emergency management agency, but decisions on the uses of these funds are based on local planning. Grant applications for equipment that will be used as a regional asset may receive more favorable consideration.
Your agency/department may also qualify for Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) depending on where you are located within the United States. Also consider FEMA’s Emergency Management Preparedness Grant (EMPG), which allows for equipment purchases in preparation for an all-hazards emergency preparation events.
Also consider these options for Public Safety Funding:
- Highway Safety Grants: The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration administers grants for law enforcement purposes. The Section 402 State and Community Highway Safety Grant Program has numerous focus areas, including improving enforcement of traffic safety laws, and enhancing emergency services. States typically offer grants to local law enforcement agencies through a competitive application process.
- Rural Area Development: If you live in a rural area of the country, you may qualify for a grant or loan under the U.S.D.A. Rural Development Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program. Public safety equipment is an allowable cost under this program.
- School Safety Grants: Many more grant opportunities are becoming available for school safety considering recent school shooting events across our country. Work with your School Resource Officers on special initiatives and include your equipment needs in the budget request.
- Corporate Giving Programs: Many large companies and utilities offer grants that target safety and security in the areas where they are located. National freight railroad companies such as BNSF, CSX and Union Pacific administer grants with a focus on keeping the communities safe where their lines are operating. Big box stores such as Target, Walmart and Sam’s Club offer grants to support public safety initiatives in general. Sandwich shop chain Firehouse Subs has also provided grants for first responder equipment across the country. Also consider reaching out to your local utility company to inquire if they have grants that they offer locally or through their corporate office.
Private Foundations: Community Foundations operate across the country by providing funding to non-profit and some government agencies focused on keeping their neighborhoods safe.
Thanks to Policegrantshelp.com for this valuable information.