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Alaska announces plans for federal public safety funding

September 16, 2019

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska is expected to get three new U.S. prosecutors as part of a federal funding increase that will address public safety in rural communities, officials said.

The U.S. Justice Department has approved nearly $11 million in funding from federal law enforcement programs, Alaska Public Media reported .

The state’s Department of Public Safety will receive $6 million, which officials said will be used to address “domestic violence, sexual assault, and other violent crimes” in local communities and tribal entities.

The award will also fund the three federal prosecutors, who will be based in Anchorage but focus on rural Alaska, officials said.

Another $5 million is earmarked for statewide tribal entities to receive hundreds of thousands of dollars for equipment and 20 new positions, officials said.

Eight communities in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta region in western Alaska recently were informed they would share in funds designated for hiring officers through the Justice Department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services.

Groups can apply for funds beginning Oct. 1 to put toward infrastructure projects such as holding cells. There is also a push for additional recruitment and retention of rural law enforcement, including village and tribal police officers, officials said.

Attorney General William Barr visited the state in May and declared a “law enforcement emergency” over the lack of access to basic protections for many rural Alaskans

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Information from: KSKA-FM, http://www.kska.org

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