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FY 2023 Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grant Program

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $312,708)

The Mississippi Forensics Laboratory (MSFL) is an accredited, state funded forensic laboratory system consisting of a central full-service laboratory in Pearl and three regional laboratories located in Batesville, Meridian and the Gulf Coast.

State funding prohibits the growth in laboratory capacity that the increasing MSFL caseload demands. Forensic staff has decreased due to attrition. The goal of the 2023 Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grants Program is to provide laboratories with the tools needed to improve the quality and timeliness of forensic services that they provide. 

The MSFL proposes to accomplish this goal by reducing the backlog of forensic casework and improving the quality of services. Funds will be used to replace a Gas Chromatograph Mass Spectrometer instrument to address the analysis of synthetic opioids and other complex drugs of abuse. Also, replacement computers will be provided to the technical and administrative staff. Continuing education for the forensic scientists in their area of expertise for individual certification requirements as well as annual maintenance fees associated with MSFL ANAB accreditation will be funded.

Deliverables include maintaining the quality and timeliness of casework in the Toxicology Section Reduction of instrument downtime will improve workflow. Certified analysts will maintain their professional status by acquiring continuing education units and the MSFL will maintain its accreditation.

Date Created: September 25, 2023