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March 17, 2011

Oswego County Sheriff's Office Receives National Grants

The Oswego County Sheriff's Office recently received grant funding from both the New York State Office of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Homeland Security Grant awarded the sheriff's office $191,741 under the national program, Operation Stonegarden.

"The monies will be used over the next three years by interested law enforcement agencies throughout Oswego County to purchase equipment and pay for overtime in functions that support Border Patrol initiatives," said Oswego County Sheriff Reuel A. Todd. "The intent of this operation is to have all agencies coordinate efforts to increase security along the U.S.-Canadian border in the Oswego station's area of responsibility."

Todd continued, "The Oswego County Sheriff's Department will be responsible for providing available manpower to work with the Oswego Border Patrol Station. Their border enforcement activities include: roving patrols, marine enforcement and marina checks."

Oswego County borders Canada with Lake Ontario and consists of 953 square miles of land area and 358 square miles of water area. Thousands of miles of highway, snowmobile and ATV trails as well as railway and canal networks all pass through the county.

Land activities will take place across the county and water operations will take place along the shorelines of Lake Ontario and Oneida Lake, as well as in and along the Oswego and Oneida Rivers.

The U.S. Department of Justice Grant was awarded in the amount of $24, 773 through the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Secure Our Schools Program.

"The funding we received with this grant allows us to supply Oswego County BOCES and our office," said Todd. "This includes equipment and other expenses associated with a new surveillance system, including cameras and a monitor, hardware and installation, and software programs."

The COPS Secure Our Schools program provides funding to assist with the purchase and development of school safety resources that address the prevention of school violence. Each grant is individualized to meet the needs of the school. This gives agencies the opportunity to establish or improve a variety of programs or equipment that encourages the continuation and enhancement of school safety efforts within their communities.

"These grants provide a tremendous opportunity for Oswego County to make a difference in the lives of our fellow citizens and our future generations," said Legislator Linda Lockwood, chairwoman of the Public Safety and Emergency Services Committee, "Our law enforcement personnel will have a role in enhancing border security by providing patrol presence in proximity to the border and its outlet routes."

Lockwood added, "Receiving the Secure Our Schools grant is important because our children spend more time in school than almost any other place outside of the home. That places a huge responsibility on our school systems to keep them safe. Our sheriff's office worked directly with the COPS Office to ensure that funding is directed toward the security needs of our young people while they are in school."

The Oswego County Legislature's Public Safety and Emergency Services Committee oversees the Sheriff's Office. In addition to Legislator Lockwood, the committee includes Vice Chairwoman Margaret Kastler, District 1; Shawn Doyle, District 3; Mary Flett, District 17; Kevin Gardner, District 13; John Martino, District 6; and Amy Tresidder, District 16.

For more information, call the Oswego County Sheriff's Office at 315-349-3307 or 1-800-582-7583.

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