Local communities awarded safety grants

Local communities awarded safety grants
Five police departments and the sheriff’s department in Obion County are among 322 agencies statewide receiving funds to improve safety on roadways.
Gov. Bill Haslam and Tennessee Department of Transportation commissioner John Schroer on Wednesday announced more than $18.1 million to support highway safety in Tennessee.
The funds support the mission of the Governor’s Highway Safety Office to save lives and reduce injuries on Tennessee roadways through leadership, innovation, coordination and program support in partnership with numerous public and private organizations.
Locally, the funding includes $5,000 each to the Obion County Sheriff’s Department and the Kenton, Samburg, South Fulton, Troy and Union City police departments for high visibility law enforcement campaigns.
In addition, the Union City Police Department has been awarded $15,000 for a network coordinator and $20,000 for alcohol countermeasures enforcement.
“We continue to work with local and state agencies to make our roadways safer,” Haslam said. “These grants will support the efforts of highway safety agencies and advocates to reduce the number of people killed and injured in traffic crashes in Tennessee each year.”
There are multiple elements that contribute to a safe roadway system. Some of those aspects are an accurate traffic safety data collection and analysis system; well-trained and well-equipped law enforcement personnel; and effective emergency medical and trauma systems. A major part of roadway safety is educating motorists about laws and good driving behaviors.
“These grants help fund a variety of enforcement, legal and educational initiatives across the state, including speed enforcement, first responder equipment purchases, DUI prosecutors and child passenger safety training,” Schroer said. “These grants will make a difference in the effectiveness of our highway safety partners.”
The National High-way Traffic Safety Administration provides the funding for these Governor’s Highway Safety Office grants.
The grants, totaling 398 for the 2012-13 funding cycle, are awarded to agencies that successfully applied for funding based on a defined problem and statistical need. Each year, the GHSO accepts applications from agencies across the state for available highway safety funds. Applications are reviewed and scored by the GHSO and external highway safety advocates.
The agencies that meet the criteria for funding received awards.
“Grants awarded by the GHSO are provided in areas of need,” GHSO director Kendell Poole said. “Statistics show our problem areas and we strive to put the funding where it will be most effective. We are dedicated to saving lives across Tennessee and pledge to work with grantees statewide to accomplish our mission.” Published in The Messenger 9.20.12

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