Glendale Police Department gets grant

The Glendale Police Department has been awarded a $228,000 grant for specialized enforcement and education operations for a range of issues, including distracted driving, pedestrian safety and repeat offenders.

The grant was one of 46 totaling $10.2 million offered to law enforcement agencies in Los Angeles and Orange counties, according to the California Office of Traffic Safety. More than 200 grants were also awarded for traffic safety statewide.

"We know we can't do it alone — we are minimally staffed and are budgetary challenged," said Glendale Traffic Bureau Lt. Steve Robertson.

Last year, the Police Department received $225,000 in state grant funding to support similar operations that also included motorcycle safety enforcement and specialized drug and alcohol training for officers.

This year, Glendale police received an additional $3,000 for traffic operations.

Police also used the funding for stings during which they monitor and cite any motorists who drive to the courthouse despite having their license suspended or revoked for drunk driving.

Nearly 600 traffic collisions with injuries were logged in 2012, according to the Police Department's collision and citation statistics. Another 108 collisions with injuries involved pedestrians.

Police also wrote 3,847 citations for speeding, 3,142 for distracted driving and issued 411 tickets to pedestrians.

The latest segment of funding will not pay for DUI checkpoints, but will support saturation patrols related to the traffic issue, said Chris Cochran, a spokesman for the California Office of Traffic Safety.

State officials have made applying for the grants easier, but Cochran said law enforcement agencies must still demonstrate a need by comparing their latest statewide collision rankings with other police agencies.

Not all law enforcement agencies that apply for a grant will receive one.

State officials receive 50% to 100% more applications per year than what are eventually funded, he said.

"They don't hand these out to everybody," Robertson said. "You have to be able to perform and to deliver."

So too do the city's residents, which Robertson said play a key role in keeping traffic safety issues in check.

"As a community, we all need to take ownership in it," he said.


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