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MUNICIPAL POLICE TRAINING FUND LEGISLATION PASSES STATE SENATE, NOW HEADING TO GOVERNOR BAKER

by Press Release
July 21, 2018

The Massachusetts State Senate passed House Bill 4516 today to create a dedicated revenue source for the Commonwealth’s municipal police training committee.  With today’s vote, the legislation will now head to Governor Baker for his signature. Today’s legislation passed unanimously) and will fund critical needs for police training.  Throughout the current legislative session the Senate has led the effort to create dedicated funding for this critical public safety need by including this legislation as amendments in the Senate’s version of the FY18 supplemental budget and the Senate’s version of the FY19 budget. The Senate passed the amendments, both introduced by Senator Julian Cyr (D-Truro), unanimously each time they were offered.  

“Municipal law enforcement officers keep our communities safe, and their ability to receive training is essential to ensure that officers are utilizing the most effective methods of community policing. I am happy that the Senate has passed this essential legislation.” said Senate President Harriette L. Chandler (D-Worcester)

“Municipal police are integral to the success of our communities, and it is vital that they are given every tool available to excel in their work,” stated Senator Karen E. Spilka (D-Ashland), Chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means.  “Passage of this bill has long been a priority of the Senate, and I am thrilled that we are getting it done today.”

“Effective and sufficient training for the men and women of local police departments that protect us every day is an absolute necessity and a moral imperative,” said Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R – Gloucester).

“I am grateful to my colleagues who unanimously supported dedicated revenue for the municipal police training committee from the moment I introduced it earlier this session. It’s excellent news for the Commonwealth that the House and Senate have done their part to recognize the sacrifice and service of police across Massachusetts,” said State Senator Julian Cyr (D-Truro) “It’s important that our Police Departments, and the men and women who serve in blue, have the best available tools to keep our communities safe and prosperous.  I am proud that the legislature worked collectively and swiftly to secure stable funding for their training.”

“I am pleased to be supporting our police officers with better training through this measure,” said Senator William N. Brownsberger, Senate Chair of the Judiciary Committee (D-Belmont). “It’s long overdue.”

“As the Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security I am particularly pleased that the Senate took action today to support a dedicated revenue source for the municipal police training fund,” said Senator Michael Moore (D-Millbury). “Ensuring that local law enforcement is adequately trained is paramount to safe communities. Given the fiscal constraints faced by municipalities, having a dedicated funding source for police training  will help alleviate some of that burden.”  

The legislation calls for up to $10 million in annual revenue for training that will be provided by adding a $2 fee per rental car transaction in the Commonwealth. The legislation also allows for three other additional sources of revenue to be used for the fund: money from the Marijuana Regulation Fund; legislative appropriations designated to the municipal police training fund; and revenue from private sources such as grants, gifts and donations.  

The dedicated funding stream will allow the Municipal Police Training Committee to maintain critical services and expand training, including:

•             First Aid/CPR in-service training

•             First-line supervision training

•             Field training

•             More sexual assault investigator training

•             First-line supervision leadership training

•             School Resource Officer training

•             Instructor trainer courses: including Firearms, Defensive Tactics; First Aid/CPR; Health and Wellness

•             Fair and impartial policing, procedural justice and, implicit bias training

This funding, when fully implemented, will allow the Municipal Police Training Committee to administer ample resources to effectively reduce or altogether eliminate the costs municipalities currently incur for recruit training. 

House Bill 4516 now returns to the House for engrossment, and then will be sent to the Governor’s desk for his review and signature.

 

Sarah E. Blodgett

Communications Director

Office of State Senator Karen E. Spilka

Senate Ways & Means Committee

617-722-1640

 

 

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