New round of COPS grants to be announced

HOUSTON Representatives from the justice department notified Mayor Annise Parker on Thursday that the city is receiving $10 million to hire a total of 50 police officers.

"Your hard work in the city of Houston hasn't gone unnoticed," Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli said to Mayor Parker. "And that's why we are here today-to recognize the work of your police department and help them do even more to protect the people who live and work in this thriving city."

The grant is being awarded under the COPS Hiring Program and is enough to cover the salary and benefits of the new officers over the course of three years.

"I am excited to receive grant funds from the Department of Justice to hire 50 additional police officers," said Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland. "This grant shows the cooperative relationship we have with our federal law enforcement partners. This will be a great benefit to the citizens of Houston and the men and women of the Houston Police Department."

The Houston Police Department was one of 379 police and sheriff's departments across the nation to receive the funding.

"Today's announcement recognizes that the Houston Police Department (HPD) is a leader in community policing," Mayor Parker said. "We will spend these dollars wisely, continuing the strict fiscal stewardship that has kept Houston from having to follow other major cities in furloughing or laying off police during these tough economic times."

The city of Houston is only major Texas city to be awarded the grant and one of only five nationwide to receive funding for 50 officers, which is the maximum allowed.

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