City of Bridgeport awarded federal grant to bolster police force

-FILE - Bridgeport Police Cruiser (WTNH / George Roelofsen)

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (WTNH) — The City of Bridgeport has been awarded a federal grant to help fund the hiring of 15 new police officers.

Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim and Police Chief Armando “A.J.” Perez announced on Tuesday that the city will be given a $1.875 million grant through the Department of Justice Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) COPS Hiring Program (CHP).

The grant will fund 50% of the salaries for 15 community police officers for the next three years.

This is the fourth time the city has been awarded funding through the COPS Hiring Program in the last 10 years.

These federal grant dollars are much needed to fulfill our community policing efforts to support our police department and the city. The Bridgeport Police Department has been and continues to work on various initiatives to integrate officers and build better community relations,” said Mayor Ganim. “My top priority as Mayor is strengthening public safety for all of us in Bridgeport and this grant is a major lift towards those efforts.”

Bridgeport Police Chief Perez said, “This is great news. I have to thank Senator Blumenthal, Senator Murphy and Congressman Himes for their continued support. This grant will allow us to bring in new officers and implement our working strategy of increasing and improving community policing initiatives throughout the city. With the addition of our class graduates, the opening of the substations, along with additional training programs, our department will be better equipped to meet the needs of our community.”

Senator Blumenthal added, “This major federal award will enable Bridgeport to hire 15 additional officers- supporting community policing, public safety and relieving budgetary pressures. I will continue to fight for additional aid for community policing and law enforcement, including federal funding to put more cops on the beat, and for the tools, technology and training that existing officers need to safely and effectively do their jobs.”

“I’m thrilled to see this nearly $1.9 million-dollar federal grant going to the City of Bridgeport and the Bridgeport Police Department,” said Senator Murphy. “These funds will help bring in new officers so that the city can continue to build on their community-oriented policing initiatives and better serve the people of Bridgeport. I’ll keep fighting to bring more federal dollars back home to Connecticut.”

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