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Santa Barbara County Sheriff, congressman back plan to help law enforcement recruit new officers

Todd Kent

Proposed new federal law would set up grant fund for aid law enforcement agencies with recruitment, hiring.

Santa Barbara County’s Sheriff traveled to Washington, D.C. to take part in the announcement of new federal legislation intended to help local law enforcement agencies deal with staffing shortages.

Sheriff Bill Brown was part of a news conference Thursday detailing the push to supply emergency grant funding for agencies. The proposal calls for creating a $162 million dollar grant fund to help departments with recruiting and hiring.

The bipartisan bill was co-authored by Democratic Congressman Salud Carbajal of Santa Barbara.

Departments have had a hard time recruiting officers for the last few years. Smaller agencies are having an especially tough time, because as new officers get experience, they often move on to larger, better paying departments.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.