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$3.75 M. grant will add Atlantic City officers to schools, traffic

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Atlantic City will be able to hire 30 new police officers after receiving a $3.75 million from the Department of Justice's Community Oriented Policing Services Hiring Grant.

“Public safety is a top priority of my administration, and we are constantly looking for ways to make improvements,” Mayor Marty Small said in announcing the grant.

The money part of nearly $217 million in grants nationwide to hire and retain 1,730 law enforcement officers to serve 394 communities and law enforcement agencies.

Atlantic City's is one of the largest in the state.

The money will be used to add school resource and traffic safety officers.

“One of the most important benefits of having school resource officers in our schools is their ability to build positive relationships with students,” Police Chief James Sarkos said. "These officers serve as positive role models and mentors for students, helping to build trust and respect between law enforcement and the community. By collaborating with school administrators, parents and community leaders, the officers can help to create a safe and supportive learning environment for all students.”

Traffic safety enforcement officers will be able to focus strictly on traffic safety, which is a concern with Atlantic and Pacific avenues ranking No. 1 and 6 as most dangerous roadways in South Jersey.

These officers also focus on providing education and outreach on traffic safety issues, working closely with schools, community organizations and other stakeholders to promote safe driving habits.

Letters of support for the grant were provided by the Casino Association, the Metropolitan Business & Citizens Association, Atlantic Cape Community College, AtlantiCare, the Greater Atlantic City Chamber, and many local nonprofits.

Elected leaders including U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, state Sen. Vincent Polistina, Assemblyman Don Guardian, Assemblywomen Claire Swift and Atlantic County Executive Denny Levinson also provided support.

author

Lynda Cohen

Lynda Cohen founded BreakingAC after working as a local newspaper reporter for more than two decades. She is an NJPA award-winner and was a Stories of Atlantic City fellow.

Tuesday, June 18, 2024
STEWARTVILLE
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