BUCKS COUNTY – December 8, 2021 − State Senator Steve Santarsiero (D-10) announced four local police departments will receive a total of $188,437 in state funding through the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD). The breakdown of awards is as follows:
- Central Bucks Regional Police Department: $59,597
- Solebury Township: $57,940
- Lower Makefield Township: $36,000
- New Britain Township: $34,900
“Keeping our communities safe requires ensuring our local police have adequate resources to do their jobs,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “Each of our municipal and area police departments show incredible dedication to protecting the community, which is why I am so pleased to advocate for these awards to support our police as they serve residents across my district.”
The funding for Central Bucks Regional Police Department will be used to build a new evidence impound yard. Following several security breaches at their previous impound yard on the Doylestown Borough public works site, Central Bucks Regional Police Department began using a neighboring police department’s facility to temporarily house evidence. With the addition of the evidence impound yard, the department will be able to apply to become a state accredited entity.
“The new yard and accompanying security features will bolster the ability of Central Bucks Regional Police Department to properly secure evidence and maintain chain of custody, which is vital to fair and timely prosecution in criminal matters,” said Sen. Santarsiero.
“This project will allow CBRPD to negate ongoing criminal activity and protection of evidentiary materials at the police impound yard,” said Central Bucks Regional Police Chief Karl Knott. “The new impound yard will allow for the final step in becoming a PA Accredited Law Enforcement Agency by meeting PLEAC standards on evidence integrity and chain of custody.”
Solebury Township will be using the funds to enhance their technological capabilities and improve their police department records management system.
“Technology is an incredible aid to support the work of our police,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “Upgrading the technology and record management system used by Solebury Township Police Department will streamline the system and improve efficiency for the department.”
“This is great news for Solebury Township and the Police Department,” said Solebury Township Police Chief Dominick Bellizzie. “We are currently using an antiquated system with limited support and it will be great for the Department to move to a state-of-the-art records management system. This will be a tremendous asset.”
Lower Makefield Township Police Department will use the awarded funds to implement innovative training for officers on a variety of subjects.
“Continued and diversified training of police officers ensures our officers have the knowledge and ability to effectively diffuse challenging situations,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “These funds will help the Lower Makefield Township Police Department implement trainings related to bias policing, officer’s duty to intervene, use of force and how to effectively work with mentally ill individuals, helping to better serve the community.”
Lower Makefield Township Police Chief Kenneth Coluzzi believes, “This grant will help foster police community trust and continue to build upon the high standards of our department.”
The funds for New Britain Township will help the police department fulfill its quest to become an accredited law enforcement agency and develop new policies for community policing.
“Our police are constantly working to protect us and ensure best practices and policies are used when interacting with the community,” said Sen. Santarsiero. “New Britain Township police officers will be better able to serve the community as they build on their work and develop new, safe ways of resolving issues that arise.”
“As a new chief I recognize the importance of innovative and evidence based policing initiatives such as policy development and accreditation,” said New Britain Township Police Chief Richard Clowser. “This grant will help New Britain Township Police Department professionalize their services and increase our accountability to the New Britain Township Community. We are excited to join the over 134 professional law enforcement agencies in Pennsylvania in achieving Pennsylvania Law Enforcement Accreditation.”
The mission of the Criminal Justice Advisory Committee (CJAC) is to support a comprehensive strategy to reduce crime that prioritizes evidence-based policy and practice at every stage of the Commonwealth’s justice system. For more information, visit the PCCD website.