The number of cops on the beat in Michigan has taken a hit and so has funding for continued training after they graduate from the academy, reports the Detroit News. Fewer police means less tickets, and that’s cutting into the budget for the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards, which issues grants for continuing education for cops, prosecutors and defense lawyers.
The commission recently sent out an advisory that it will not accept competitive grant applications for 2016. The grants have traditionally reflected 40 percent of funds provided overall for officer training. The bottom line: Criminal justice will suffer unless other sources can be found for training funds, experts says. In 1982 a $5 state surcharge on traffic tickets was imposed to raise money to train officers. Sixty percent of the revenue was to be distributed to departments across Michigan. The other 40 percent was to go toward competitive grants and to train defense attorneys and prosecutors. But changes in how the money is used has chewed away at the funding in the past 15 years.