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Mesa gets stimulus cash for cops

MESA – Mesa is set to receive about $6 million in stimulus cash to hire up to 25 additional police officers.

However, City Manager Chris Brady and Mayor Scott Smith have concerns that even though the grant pays for the initial hire and some other related costs, it may create a burden on the city’s budget.

Earlier, Brady told the council it’s likely that regardless of how many the federal government approves, Mesa may only be able to hire 10 to 15 officers.

Under the grant program, Mesa police would be required to pay officer salaries and benefits in their fourth year. The federal money would go toward paying for entry-level officers for the first three years.

Hiring 25 officers would put Mesa’s cost at $3.9 million spread over four years. Of that, $2.5 million would have to be spent in the fourth year.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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