PAOLA — The Miami County Sheriff’s Office has been awarded nearly $360,000 in grants so far in 2019 to fund numerous equipment expenditures.
On Wednesday, Nov. 20, the sheriff’s office publicly recognized and presented plaques to the organizations and companies that provided those grants.
The plaque presentations took place immediately after the County Commission meeting, and the five commissioners were also in attendance, as well as sheriff’s office staff and other county employees.
Sheriff Frank Kelly also recognized Communications Supervisor Allison Ray, who oversees the 911 dispatch center, for her work in obtaining the grants.
The following grants have been awarded to the sheriff’s office this year:
$284,272 — Partially funded grant from The Kansas 911 Coordinating Council for four P23 IP based dispatch consoles.
“We have four consoles currently, and all four will be upgraded,” Capt. Matt Kelly said in a follow-up email.
$63,424 — Fully funded grant from Federal Edward J. Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program (JAG) awarded by the Kansas Criminal Justice Coordinating Council for the purchase of body worn cameras for all certified deputies and deputy Jailers.
The body cameras were an added item for the department. The grant for the body cameras also covered all the attachments, software and servers, according to the sheriff’s office.
$4,356.02 — Fully funded grant from First Option Bank Trusteed L.W. Baehr & Dolpha Baehr Charitable Foundation Trust to purchase ballistic helmets and a ballistic vest for the special operations response team.
The ballistic helmets and the ballistic vest for the special operations response team were to replace expired equipment, according to the sheriff’s office. The helmets have a 10-year expiration. The vest has a five-year expiration.
$3,500 — Fully funded grant from Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway Foundation to purchase ballistic helmets for every patrol deputy.
The ballistic helmets for the patrol deputies were an added item. The helmets have an expiration of 10 years.
“Not all deputies had a ballistic helmet in their patrol car but do now,” Capt. Kelly said.
BNSF Railway representative Kevin Anderson accepted the plaque.
“I am happy to work for a company that gives back to the community so frequently and a lot of it goes to law enforcement,” Anderson said.
$3,569.40 — Fully funded grant from Firehouse Subs Public Safety Community Foundation to purchase individual first aid trauma kits with combat gauze for placement with each Miami County sheriff’s deputy.
“The trauma kits are an added item we didn’t have before,” Capt. Kelly said.
Sheriff Kelly said the grants help offset costs from the department’s annual budget.
“With the help of these local and non-local organizations we are able to enhance our life-saving and support equipment,” Kelly said. “Undersheriff Wayne Minckley and I appreciate the dedicated work of our staff and the organizations to make this happen.”
Sheriff Kelly also presented plaques to representatives of Queen’s Price Chopper and Walmart, both of Paola, for those companies’ donations of food and other items to the sheriff’s office throughout the year for various events.
“Each year we do many events and programs. Every time I call Barry Queen, and say ‘I need chips, drinks, food, can you help me out?’ He always says, ‘Absolutey,’” the sheriff said. “The same is true with Walmart. They help us with food and grants for things like Cops for Tots and Kids and Cops Fishing.”