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BPD gets grant for emergency preparations

The Brookhaven Police Department has received a $244,746.55grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for emergencypreparedness to be used for supplies and services that will betterequip the city for the hurricane season.

Police Chief Arlustra “Pap” Henderson presented the news to themayor and board of aldermen at last night’s meeting. The money isfor preparations for the next hurricanes, not for the past,Henderson said.

The money will go toward the salary of two additional officersfor two years, patrol cars, two chain saws, one all terrainvehicle, decals, shotguns, barricades, cones, a pick-up truck,toolbox and winch for the truck, one generator and otherequipment.

“They tell us once we get the grant exactly what it can be spenton,” said City Clerk Michael Jinks.

With the new officers and equipment, police department will beable to respond more efficiently to the challenges brought by anatural disaster, Henderson said.

In a letter addressed to the city, Gov. Haley Barbour said, “Iknow these funds will be a vital part of success as your lawenforcement agency works to rebuild public safety programs afterthe devastating blows of Hurricane Katrina.”

Barbour’s letter said Mississippi was awarded a total of $58.25million in supplemental funds for law enforcement agencies.Seventeen counties were eligible for the funds.

“Other than the coastal counties, we were awarded the highestamount,” Jinks said.

Metro Narcotics Agent John Douglas, Jinks, and Hendersonattended a meeting for the Mississippi Department of Public Safetyhurricane relief fund and were responsible for preparing theapplication.

“I thank God,” Henderson said. “It was a blessing for us.”