NJ Attorney General Awards $3.5 Million For Bullet Resistant Vests

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TRENTON – Attorney General Paula T. Dow and Criminal Justice Director Stephen J. Taylor announced Tuesday that the Division of Criminal Justice is distributing nearly $3.6 million to over 500 New Jersey law enforcement agencies to purchase or replace body armor vests for their officers.

According to Taylor, a total of $3,586,827 is being provided to state, county and local law enforcement and corrections agencies from the state’s Body Armor Replacement Fund, which was established by legislation in 1998 and is funded through a $1 surcharge on traffic tickets and forfeitures of bail. Notifications of awards for the 2011 round of funding were emailed to participating agencies today. Grants were provided to all 544 agencies that applied.

Twenty-nine agencies in Middlesex County will split $184,829.76, while 25 Union County agencies will divide $180,188.33. Grant amounts to specific law enforcement agencies in the two counties are listed at the end of this article.

“Last year, upon taking office, this administration restored millions of dollars in dedicated funding for police body armor which the prior administration had diverted as a stopgap for unrelated state budget expenses,” said Dow. “Under my watch, funding from the Body Armor Replacement Fund, which totals nearly $3.6 million this year, will be used to stop only one thing: the bullets that threaten our devoted officers in New Jersey.”

“In these tough economic times, police are hard-pressed to find money for new equipment,” said Taylor. “This $3.6 million in funding will help to ensure that one of their most crucial pieces of equipment – lifesaving body armor – will not be outdated and worn out when our officers hit the streets to protect New Jersey residents.”

The cost of body armor varies, but the minimum grant amount is $500. The state has a multi-vendor contract with distributors that enables law enforcement agencies to purchase the make and model of vest that best meets their needs.

As a condition of the state grant, agencies must purchase vests from a list of vests certified by the National Institute of Justice, the research arm of the U.S. Department of Justice. There are hundreds of approved vests on the list. The New Jersey State Police, for example, is currently purchasing a vest, together with certain accessories, at a state contract price of $759.80 per vest package.

Since the inception of the Body Armor Replacement Fund Program in 1998, the Division of Criminal Justice – Grants & Program Development Section has provided nearly $50 million to the New Jersey statewide law enforcement community to purchase thousands of new vests.

Middlesex County
Carteret Police – $5,356.83
Cranbury Township Police – $1,948.53
Dunellen Police – $1,863.32
East Brunswick Police – $7,487.01
Edison Police – $16,007.76
Helmetta Police – $926.04
Highland Park Police – $2,630.19
Jamesburg Police – $1,607.70
Metuchen Police – $2,800.60
Middlesex Borough Police – $2,544.98
Middlesex County College Police – $1,522.49
Middlesex County Department of Corrections – $20,779.38
Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office – $7,146.18
Middlesex County Sheriff’s Office – $13,025.50
Milltown Borough Police – $1,778.11
Monroe Township Police – $4,845.58
New Brunswick Police – $11,832.60
North Brunswick Police – $6,890.56
Old Bridge Township Police – $9,020.75
Perth Amboy Police – $9,872.82
Piscataway Township Police – $7,657.43
Plainsboro Township Police – $3,482.26
Sayreville Police – $7,827.84
South Amboy Police – $2,630.19
South Brunswick Township Police – $6,549.73
South Plainfield Police – $4,589.96
South River Police – $3,141.43
Spotswood Police – $2,118.94
Woodbridge Township Police – $16,945.05
Total County Distribution: $184,829.76

Union County
Berkeley Heights Police – $2,544.98
Clark Police – $3,908.30
Cranford Police – $4,504.75
Elizabeth Police – $26,999.53
Fanwood Police – $1,948.53
Garwood Police – $1,778.11
Hillside Police – $6,208.90
Kenilworth Borough Police – $2,630.19
Linden Police – $10,895.31
Mountainside Police – $2,374.56
New Providence Police – $2,544.98
Plainfield Police – $12,258.63
Rahway Police – $6,720.15
Roselle Park Police – $3,397.05
Roselle Police – $5,356.83
Scotch Plains Police – $4,334.34
Springfield Townhip Police – $4,078.71
Summit Police – $4,419.54
Union County Jail – $26,488.29
Union County Police – $6,805.35
Union County Prosecutor’s Office – $6,975.77
Union County Sherriff’s Office – $14,474.03
Union Township Police – $12,173.43
Westfield Police – $5,186.41
Winfield Police – $1,181.66
Total County Distribution: $180,188.33

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