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Deadline for 2011 COPS Hiring Program (CHP) looming this week

CHP provides funds directly to law enforcement agencies to hire new and/or rehire career law enforcement officers

The Department of Justice deadline for the 2011 COPs program is just around the corner, May 25, 2011, at 8:59 PM, EDT. There are several key documents and tools you can use to make your application stand out in the sea of applications expected to be submitted. Take a few moments to access the grant announcement and all of the necessary documents for completing the application process.

The fiscal year (FY) 2011 COPS Hiring Program (CHP) is designed to advance public safety through community policing by addressing the full-time sworn officer needs of state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies nationwide. CHP provides funds directly to law enforcement agencies to hire new and/or rehire career law enforcement officers, and to increase their community policing capacity and crime prevention efforts. Available CHP funding in FY2011 will be a little more than $200 million.

CHP is one of several hiring programs developed by the COPS Office since its inception to support law enforcement. This is particularly important as state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies embrace the challenge

Please make sure you use the new and expanded Standard From 424. This form contains required application information for each of the COPS grants. You must complete, only, the program section which applies to your grant request.

The COPS Office will accept new applications for the FY2011 CHP grant program in a two part process. First, agencies must register and apply online via www.grants.gov to complete the Standard Form 424 (SF-424). The SF-424 is a government-wide standard application form for federal assistance. The SF-424 is intended to reduce the administrative burden to the federal grants community, which includes applicants/grantees and federal staff involved in grants-related activities. Once the SF-424 has been submitted, the applicant will receive an e-mail from the COPS Office with instructions on completing the second part of the CHP application process through the COPS Office Online Application System found on the COPS Office website.

All applicants for federal grants and cooperative agreements, with the exception of individuals other than sole proprietors, are required to have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and be registered in the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) database prior to submitting an application.

According to the Department of Justice Fact Sheet: The COPS Office has capped the number of officers that an agency can request through the FY2011 CHP program. There is no local match or cap on the amount of funding that can be requested per officer position; however, CHP grant funding will be based on the current full-time entry-level salary and fringe benefits package of an officer in the department. Any additional costs for higher than entry-level salaries and fringe benefits will be the responsibility of the grantee agency. All agencies’ requests will be capped at no more than five percent of their actual sworn force strength as reported on the date of application, up to a maximum of 50 officers. Additionally, the request of any agency with a sworn force strength less than or equal to 20 will be capped at one officer.

The COPS statutory non-supplanting requirement mandates that CHP funds must be used to supplement (increase) state, local, or BIA funds that would have been dedicated toward sworn officer positions if federal funding had not been awarded. CHP grant funds must not be used to supplant (replace) local funds that agencies otherwise would have devoted to sworn officer hiring. The hiring or rehiring of officers under CHP must be in addition to, and not in lieu of, officers who otherwise would have been hired or rehired with state, local, or BIA funds.
At the conclusion of the three years (36 months) of federal funding, grantees must retain all sworn officer positions awarded under the CHP grant for a minimum of 12 months.

The retained CHP-funded position(s) should be added to the grantee’s law enforcement budget with state and/or local funds, over and above the number of locally-funded positions that would have existed in the absence of the grant. Applicants are required to affirm in their CHP grant application that their agency plans to retain any additional officer positions awarded following the expiration of the grant and identify their planned source(s) of retention funding.

It is highly recommended that each department review and utilize the recommendations from the following documents while preparing for this application. These documents contain the program best practices and strategic thinking which needs to be incorporated into your COPS Hiring Program.

• Discover Policing This website offers first hand descriptions of law enforcement work and provides opportunities for potential recruits and agencies to connect. www.discoverpolicing.org

• Police Training Officer (PTO) CD-ROM This CD is a four-part compilation of resources of the COPS Office Police Training Officer (PTO) program, an innovative field training experience reflecting policing in the 21st century.

• Police Recruitment and Retention for the New Millennium This guidebook summarizes for police practitioners lessons on recruiting and retaining diverse, effective workforces. It provides a means for local officials to identify what has been tried elsewhere and what might be applicable in their own communities.

• Today’s Police and Sheriff Recruits This report provides the results of a recruit assessment conducted by RAND, including both findings about the overall sample as well as those focused on groups often of particular interest to law enforcement recruitment professionals.

For more information about the COPS Hiring Program, please call the COPS Office Response Center at 800.421.6770, or visit COPS Online.

In addition, the COPS office has developed and posted a very comprehensive Technology e-Kit and a series of tool kits which need to be consulted by and department which is seeking COPS funding. This tool kits assist the department in the planning and development of fundable grant projects which are more likely to be awarded funding. You may find these tool kits here.

This challenging economy has created an even stronger need for grant funding to assist with our departments to serve the needs of their communities. This in turn has created the need for savvy grant writing and strong strategic planning for each and every grant. The COPS grant included. Make sure your team reviews and considers all of the materials presented by the COPS office to guide your application.

As always please feel free to contact PoliceGrantsHelp.com with any further questions you may have about funding. Best wishes with your applications.

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