Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $292,636)
The Tulsa Police Department Forensic Laboratory (TPDFL) tests DNA evidence from criminal investigations for the City of Tulsa Police Department. In 2019, the Oklahoma legislature passed Senate Bill 975, which requires law enforcement agencies to submit sexual assault evidence kits to an accredited forensic laboratory within 20 days of collection. This law dramatically increased the number of service requests submitted to the TPDFL for DNA testing.
The TPDFL requests federal funding through the FY 2023 DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction (CEBR) Program to alleviate the increased service demand by improving operational capacity and decreasing the turnaround time for testing and CODIS entry of eligible crime-scene evidence. The FY 2023 DNA CEBR award will fund the following initiatives:
Retaining one grant-funded DNA analyst through September 2025;
Computer upgrades for DNA workstations where personnel perform testing activities;
Maintenance and service fees for equipment critical to the DNA testing process;
Maintenance fees for LIMS software that personnel use to record DNA testing activities;
Service fees for compliance software supporting the DNA quality assurance program;
Annual fees and a surveillance document review to maintain laboratory accreditation;
Continuing education opportunities for DNA personnel; and
Travel costs to attend the FY 2023 DNA CEBR Program mandatory training event.
These initiatives will support and enhance the existing short- and long-term strategies for DNA backlog reduction implemented by the TPDFL with previous award funding. The TPDFL administrators and DNA section personnel appreciate the opportunity to apply for the FY 2023 DNA CEBR Program award to continue advancing DNA testing capacity and services for the citizens of Tulsa, Oklahoma.