St. Paul accepts DOJ grant to hire new police officers

The city of St. Paul has received a grant to hire more police officers.

St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter announced Thursday that the city will accept the U.S. Department of Justice’s Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) grant. The grant required matching funds, according to the city.

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The $3.75 million grant will be matched with American Rescue Plan funds to support the hiring of 30 new officers later this year, the city said. St. Paul plans to have two 40-officer academies this year: one in August and another in December.

“We are pleased to accept this grant to support our neighborhood safety efforts,” Carter said in a statement. “This grant, our ongoing Community-First Public Safety efforts, and the establishment of our new Office of Neighborhood Safety are big steps toward improving public safety outcomes in our city.”

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS reported in January that St. Paul’s police force was about 80 officers short of its authorized staffing level, according to Mark Ross, the head of the city’s police union.