Approximately 200 cities and towns received $78.1 million in grants this month to help fund the hiring of law enforcement officers. The grants were awarded under the Universal Hiring Program from the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS). The grants fund 75 percent of the total salary and benefits of each new officer over three years, up to a maximum of $75,000 per officer. As part of the grant application process, law enforcement agencies were required to describe how the new officers would support local homeland security efforts. For a list of agencies that received grants, visit

www.cops.usdoj.gov

.