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Putting 100,000 Officers on the Street: A Survey-Based Assessment of the Federal COPS Program

NCJ Number
Date Published
February 2003
38 pages
Publication Series
This paper discusses attempts to add 100,000 police officers to communities throughout the United States as part of the Federal Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program.
The crime control policy COPS, was designed to add 100,000 police officers to the Nation’s communities through grants for hiring officers and civilians and to acquire new technologies to combat crime. This report describes the ways in which Title I of the 1994 Crime Act allocated nearly $9 billion to the COPS program. Designed to supplement, not replace, preexisting officer positions, the COPS program has aimed to increase officer strength and acquire a variety of technologies, such as mobile and desktop computers. Presenting previous evaluations of the COPS program’s attempts to fulfill its mission, the authors indicate that the first 100,000 officers awarded through COPS would result in at least the temporary hiring of 60,900 officers between 1995 and 2003. Updating the impact of the COPS program’s goals and efforts, the authors conducted a telephone survey and interview with a sample of 1,270 police agencies in the summer of 2000. Survey and interview results suggest that most grant recipients will continue to employ most of the officer and civilian positions hired through the COPS program even after their grants expire. Furthermore, the authors found that productivity gains from the technology grants will closely approximate the projected gains. A series of tables presenting telephone survey results and a series of appendices detailing the national COPS survey and the statistical analyses used in this report are also provided. References

Date Published: February 1, 2003