Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $315,709)
The Recovery Act Edward Byrne Memorial Competitive Grant Program (Byrne Competitive Program) will help communities improve the capacity of state and local justice systems and provide for national support efforts including training and technical assistance programs strategically targeted to address local needs. This competitive grant announcement focuses on initiatives in eight areas: 1) preventing and reducing violent crime through community-based data-driven approaches; 2) providing funding for neighborhood-based probation and parole officers; 3) reducing mortgage fraud and crime related to vacant properties; 4) hiring of civilian support personnel in law enforcement (training staff, analysts, dispatchers, etc.); 5) enhancing forensic and crime scene investigations; 6) improving resources and services for victims of crime; 7) supporting problem-solving courts; and 8) national training and technical assistance partnerships.
Under category 4, the city of Bakersfield, in conjunction with the Bakersfield Police Department, will use the grant award to hire civilian law enforcement staff. From 2003 through 2008, violent crimes in the city increased 48 percent. In the second quarter of 2008, utilizing a Crime Analyst and Crime Prevention Specialist, information was collected and underwent intensive analysis, which provided direction for a focused intervention. A positive outcome was achieved regarding the offense targeted for impact. Due to budget restraints, the analyst and specialist were laid off. The goal of the project is to return officers to the street to be able to impact the increasing crime rate through the disruption of criminal activity and reduction of the community's victimization. To accomplish these goals, the city and the police department will reinstate the jobs for a Crime Analyst and a Crime Prevention Specialist that were lost within the last 12 months. Filling these jobs will facilitate the implementation of the project's objectives and activities and make officers more available on the street.