CLEARFIELD – On Tuesday the Clearfield County Commissioners approved a grant application that would help fund a regional police communication project.
The grant is being made available through the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency’s (PCCD) Office of Criminal Justice System Improvements, according to Community Development Specialist Lisa Kovalick.
She said the county will seek $49,988 for radio equipment to improve communications for the Clearfield and Curwensville Borough, DuBois City and Lawrence and Sandy Township police departments.
She said that these municipalities didn’t qualify for a direct JAG award from the Bureau of Justice Assistance. However, she said they’re currently eligible municipalities for the PCCD’s “JAG Under 10K” initiative.
Kovalick said if received, the grant would fund this regional communication effort. In total, she said county offices and police within the justice system need at least 135 portable digital radios; 42 digital mobile radios; and 10 bases.
She said the county’s 911 Center is preparing to switch its radio systems from analog to digital within the next 18-24 months. She said while the center transitions to the future, these municipalities are concerned with the costs of purchasing police radios.
According to 2017 Pennsylvania Uniform Crime Reporting System data, it’s evident this need affects approximately 34,202 people throughout Clearfield County. These five police forces combined to report 5,098 crimes that same year.
Kovalick said without compatible radio systems, there would be a threat to the safety of county residents. With this grant, she said they’d be able to address a small part of this need.
Kovalick noted that the county will also seek other funding sources for the project.