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These 37 NJ towns to share $500K to buy police body cameras

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More than three dozen police agencies in the state will share $566,000 in federal grants to help purchase 1,132 body-worn cameras for police officers.

The federal grants were awarded by the state Attorney General’s Office, which said Wednesday that all 37 agencies that applied received grants. For most of the agencies, the grants will cover the full cost of the cameras.

This is just the latest round of funding for body cams, which have been touted by law enforcement officials and reform advocates as a way to protect community trust in the police.

The state in 2015 set aside $4 million in criminal forfeiture funds to purchase police body cameras.

State Police used $1.5 million to equip every trooper on patrol with a body camera and $2.5 million was awarded to 176 police departments for cameras.

“This new round of funding for body cameras will keep New Jersey in the vanguard nationally in using this technology, which promotes transparency in policing while protecting officers in their difficult and dangerous jobs,” state Attorney General Christopher Porrino said Wednesday.

Body cameras used by more than half of NJ’s police departments

The amount announced Wednesday is almost equal to the estimated amount that state Municipal Courts collected last year in a drunk-driving surcharge was supposed to be used by police departments to buy dashboard cameras for police vehicles.

But the law and the surcharge were abolished early last year by the Council on Local Mandates, a state panel charged with striking laws that impose unfunded mandates on local governments.

Courts, however, continue to collect the $25 fine — even though some state officials believe doing so is illegal — and state officials have not been able to explain how the money has been used, New Jersey 101.5 reported last month.

 

Body cam grants

Department Cameras Grant
Bayonne 180 $90,000
Perth Amboy 100 $50,000
Englewood 70 $35,000
Wall 64 $32,000
Hamilton (Alantic) 40 $20,000
North Brunswick 40 $20,000
Maple Shade 37 $18,500
Medford 33 $16,500
Florham Park 30 $15,000
Somerset Sheriff 30 $15,000
Cedar Grove 30 $15,000
Verona 30 $15,000
Madison 30 $15,000
Nutley 30 $15,000
Roselle 30 $15,000
Holmdel 30 $15,000
Hackensack 30 $15,000
Cinnaminson 28 $14,000
Mantua 25 $12,500
Hunterdon Prosecutor 25 $12,500
Kenilworth 24 $12,000
Kearny 24 $12,000
Bordentown 23 $11,500
Long Hill 23 $11,500
Eastampton 18 $9,000
Hunterdon Sheriff 16 $8,000
Mansfield 14 $7,000
Hightstown 13 $6,500
Elk 12 $6,000
Green Brook 10 $5,000
Northfield 9 $4,500
South Bound Brook 8 $4,000
Wenonah 7 $3,500
Longport 6 $3,000
Delanco 6 $3,000
Greenwich (Warren) 5 $2,500
Lower Alloways Creek 2 $1,000

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