Police agencies keeping eyes on outlook for COPS

Updated: Jan. 24, 2017 at 12:33 PM EST
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Though he has often praised the nation's law enforcement agencies, the election of Donald Trump could put a budget-related bulls-eye on a program that funnels millions of dollars to local police departments.
A report by The Hill says the Trump team wants to cut federal spending by $10.5 trillion over a decade.
Programs that could be eliminated in the Department of Justice include the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, or COPS. The website for that office says it has spent more than $14 billion to advance community policing, often through gr ants to local law enforcement agencies.
The City of Columbia has been involved in the COPS concept for more than two decades.
On the Columbia Police Department's website, the agency notes that it is one of only 15 nationwide to participate in the Advancing 21st Century Policing
Initiative launched by the Justice Department and its COPS office.
Last year, COPS awarded gr ants to at least eight South Carolina law enforcement agencies. CPD received $1.875 million for what is listed as "community engagement."
Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook says the office has been "instrumental" in advancing law enforcement over the last 20 years. Holbrook says his department will use COPS money to fund 15 police officer positions. He says no matter what happens with the budget, CPD will remain committed to the COPS mindset as long as he is chief.
Other South Carolina cities receiving COPS funding include Summerville, Hardeeville, Camden, North Myrtle Beach, Cayce, Spartanburg and the Hampton County Sheriff's Department.

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