By Alan Sorensen
U.S. Senator Max Baucus, D-Mont., announced in a news release Monday that the Havre Police Department is one of several local Montana law enforcement agencies that will share in more than $1 million of federal funding.
Assistant Havre Police Chief Kevin Olson said the Havre Police Department has received funding ever since the program was enacted by Congress in 1995. Havres share this year will be $13,958.
Over the years, the money has been used almost exclusively to update the departments computer system.
It has accounted for the use of laptop computers in patrol cars. It also is used for computer systems updates to advance communications and information networking between the police department and Hill County Sheriffs Office.
They may also be used for additional equipment, training, security enhancement, overtime, and improving technology for effective law enforcement, Olson said.
Grants totaling $978,379 from the Local Law Enforcement Block Grant program will be divvied up among 25 city and county agencies. The amount awarded to each jurisdiction as determined by the U.S. Department of Justice was based on that jurisdictions three-year average of reported violent crimes.
Each of the 25 selected agencies will receive more than $10,000 from the funding.
A few departments similar in size to HPD and their funding are Kalispell with $10,081, Whitefish with $17,319, and Gallatin County, $20,679.
The largest slices of funding are going to the city of Billings, $146,821, and the city of Helena, $107,531.
The Montana Board of Crime Control will receive another $201,621 for distribution to remaining jurisdictions whose awards fall below the $10,000 eligibility criteria.