Charleston Council Moves to Accept Grant Money

July 12, 2010

Investigative Reports

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The NerveDuring the summer months, both the Charleston County Council and the council committees meet but once a month.

As is common in recent months, the finance committee approved applications for federal grants, most related to the American Recovery and Restoration Program.

The largest amount was $736,095 under the 2010 Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Hiring Recovery Program. This will be used to fund the hiring of five deputy sheriffs for three years.

The county, if its application is accepted, will be obliged to maintain the positions for a year after the grant expires, which in effect is a match of about $250,000 in fiscal year 2014.

Members were initially ambivalent about the request because the documentation provided by staff indicated a match of near $750,000. They were uncertain about making such a large commitment in these uncertain times.

But council member Victor Rawl drew attention to the discrepancy in the figures and wondered why the commitment was so high. Staff conceded a mistake and the commitment was only a third of that stated. Most council members proceeded.

The other large grant was for $125,000 under the 2009 Port Security Program. The funds will be used to buy computers and other equipment. The sheriff’s office will provide a $31,250 match.

This funding will enable the sheriff’s office to obtain mobile computer devices and air cards necessary to expedite field reporting and facilitate information and intelligence sharing with local, state and federal law enforcement and the new SLED Regional Fusion Center located as the USCG’s Charleston Interagency Operations Center.

Warwick Jones is a resident of Charleston and has been involved with a number of area organizations, including the Charleston County Greenbelt Advisory Board and the Preservation Society of Charleston.