The Sarasota Police Department and Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office learned this afternoon that they each received grant money from the U.S. Department of Justice.
The police department was awarded $2.2 million, and the sheriff’s office received $363,476.
The Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) grant is meant to hire or retain officers during the economic downturn.
“This is great news,” said City Manager Bob Bartolotta. “It will go a long way with our budget.”
The police department presented its 2010 budget last week; it was counting on the grant to help reduce the budget by $2.1 million.
There are currently 179 sworn officers in the Sarasota Police Department. That is the same staffing level the department had in 1987.
The grant will allow the sherrif's office to hire two new deputies.
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