HOWELL – The Howell Police Department will receive a $489,120 grant to purchase 240 body-worn cameras (BWC), after Governor Phil Murphy announced the statewide mandate.
Murphy was joined by Attorney General Gurbir Grewal and more at a press conference on June 1 to announce that the state will fund all 487 law enforcement agencies that applied to the Attorney General’s Office for grant funding to purchase body-worn cameras and associated equipment under the governor’s mandate.
Back in November, Murphy signed legislation that required every uniformed patrol officer in the state to be outfitted with a body-worn camera while on duty by June 1, 2021. The goal of this policy is for policing to be more transparent by recording police-citizen encounters, officials said.
On May 25, Grewal along with Murphy and Lieutenant Governor Oliver joined federal, state and local officials at the Camden County Police Department to announce the mandate and set the foundation on how the body cameras will properly be used.
“We are witnessing a new chapter in policing in New Jersey with the reforms we are implementing in partnership with law enforcement and community leaders. And, with the body cameras we are funding, we will literally have an objective witness to how police carry out their duties,” Murphy said. “These powerful devices have been embraced by community members and advocates calling for transparency and by police officers, who see them as a critical tool to protect and assist law enforcement with their difficult jobs. On this important day, we’re also happy to announce funding for all 487 agencies that applied for body-worn camera grants.”
“As we work to strengthen trust between our officers and the diverse communities they serve, the need for accountability and transparency in policing has never been greater,” Grewal said. “Body cameras are a powerful tool to help us in these efforts. By acting as an unbiased witness to law enforcement actions, they help to safeguard equal justice, while also protecting the vast majority of officers who do the right thing day-in and day-out.”
At county level, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office was awarded $264,940, 130 BWC, and the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office was awarded $203,800, 130 BWC.
In addition to Howell Township, the following Monmouth County agencies were awarded:
- Asbury Park: $244,560 (120 BWC)
- Englishtown: $20,380 (10 BWC)
- Fair Haven: $52,988 (26 BWC)
- Freehold Borough: $81,520 (40 BWC)
- Freehold Township: $161,002 (79 BWC)
- Hazlet Township: $114,128 (56 BWC)
- Holmdel Township: $42,798 (21 BWC)
- Keansburg: $48,912 (24 BWC)
- Keyport: $32,608 (16 BWC)
- Little Silver: $24,456 (12 BWC)
- Manalapan: $122,280 (60 BWC)
- Marlboro Township: $205,838 (101 BWC)
- Middletown: $264,940 (130 BWC)
- Neptune Township: $189,534 (93 BWC)
- Red Bank: $81,520 (40 BWC)
- Rumson: $61,140 (30 BWC)
- Shrewsbury Borough: $24,456 (12)
- Wall: $132,470 (65 BWC)
“This is a new day in policing for our state and our country and I want to thank Governor Murphy, Attorney General Grewal, and our legislators for proactively getting in front of the issue of implementing informed and effective policing practices,” Oliver, who serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs said “Body cameras are about supporting police officers so they can do their job better. And we are immensely grateful for the job they do every day to keep us safe.”