Governor Phil Bredesen and Tennessee Department of Transportation Commissioner Gerald Nicely have announced that highway safety grants have been awarded to the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department, the Alexandria Police Department, and the Smithville Police Department.
The Sheriff's Department and the Alexandria Police Department will each get $5,000 to support high visibility law enforcement efforts and the Smithville Police Department will receive $15,000 to support Multiple Traffic Violations enforcement efforts.
The Governor's Highway Safety Office (GHSO) mission is to save lives and reduce injuries on Tennessee roadways through leadership, innovation, coordination, and program support in partnership with other public and private organizations. The grants awarded will be used to promote this mission.
"These highway safety grants reflect a continued commitment to working with local and state agencies to make our roadways safer," said Bredesen. "These grant funds will support the efforts of highway safety agencies and advocates to reduce the number of people killed and injured in traffic crashes in Tennessee each year."
The grants are awarded to agencies that successfully applied for funding based on a defined problem and statistical need. Each year, the GHSO accepts applications from agencies across the state for available highway safety funds. Applications are reviewed and scored by the GHSO and external highway safety advocates. The agencies that meet the criteria for funding received awards.
"These grants help fund a variety of enforcement, legal and educational activities across the state including speed enforcement, first responder equipment purchases, DUI prosecutors and child passenger safety training," said Nicely. "These grants will make a difference in the effectiveness of our highway safety partners."
There are several elements that contribute to a sound and safe roadway system. Some of those aspects are an accurate traffic safety data collection and analysis system; well-trained and equipped law enforcement personnel; and effective emergency medical and trauma systems. A major part of roadway safety is educating motorists about laws and good driving behaviors.
"Grants awarded by the GHSO are provided in areas of need," reported GHSO Director Kendell Poole. "Statistics show our problem areas and we strive to put the funding where it will be most effective. We are dedicated to saving lives across Tennessee and pledge to work with grantees statewide to accomplish our mission."
Senator Mae Beavers and Representative Terri Lynn Weaver worked to secure funds for these departments.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provides the funding for GHSO grants.