Chief: Ferriday could get $86,000 in grants

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 19, 2000

FERRIDAY – The Ferriday Police Department may still be eligible to receive about $86,000 in federal grants to hire two more officers for three years, Police Chief Bobby Sheppard said Tuesday.

&uot;The total amount of the original (COPS) grants from the U.S. Department of Justice was $129,000,&uot; Sheppard said.

&uot;But from what we can tell, the difference was already spent to hire two officers&uot; before Sheppard took office July 1, he added.

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Sheppard said he and the town’s administrative assistant, Alex Promise, are working with the Department of Justice this week to find out exactly how much grant money is left and whether Ferriday can get a three-year extension to use it.

&uot;The money’s still there, but we need to get an extension of the time in which we can use the money,&uot; Sheppard said.

If the town gets an extension of time to use the grant, Ferriday will still have to match the award with its own funds.

The most likely source of those funds to match the grant will be a 3/4-cent sales tax increase Ferriday voters passed last fall, which is expected to generate $360,000 during the fiscal year that started July 1.

Mayor Glen McGlothin and members of the Ferriday Town Council, who were sworn in July 1, have said they are in favor of using proceeds from the tax to match the COPS funds.

Not including Sheppard and part-time Officer Richard Madison, the department has eight full-time patrol officers.

But getting enough money to hire and retain officers has long been a problem in Ferriday, town officials have said.