Troopers, Prosecutors, Investigators Included in Public Safety Budget
November 29, 2012, Juneau, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell announced today his Fiscal Year 2014 budget proposal continues the administration’s commitment to ending the epidemic of domestic violence and sexual assault in Alaska. Now in its fourth year, the comprehensive Choose Respect initiative in FY 2014 will be reinforced with $14.8 million for prevention and education, support for survivors, and justice. More than 120 Alaska communities held Choose Respect events this year.
“All Alaskans deserve to be safe in their homes and communities,” Governor Parnell said. “We now understand the magnitude of the violence and have made significant strides in building pathways to prevention and healing.”
The governor’s budget request includes $2.8 million for 15 new state troopers to expand continuous coverage for the Railbelt, from the Kenai Peninsula to Fairbanks. The need for additional trooper coverage in the Railbelt is reflected by the growing population in the region and increased call volume. The budget also contains $824,000 for a new trooper post in Hooper Bay.
“We must provide adequate patrol coverage in these areas to preserve the peace and protect Alaskans,” Governor Parnell said. “Public safety is an essential state service for residents outside of municipal areas. Alaska State Troopers work closely with local law enforcement and VPSOs across the state to provide these vital services.”
The budget also includes $2.7 million for 15 more Village Public Safety Officers (VPSO), bringing the total number of VPSO positions to 131. Additionally, $815,000 is proposed for three new prosecutors and legal support in Bethel, Fairbanks, and Juneau to aggressively pursue child sexual abuse cases. The budget also proposes $827,000 for three investigators targeting child abuse and sex trafficking.
The proposed budget includes:
- $3 million for domestic violence and sexual assault prevention efforts
- $1.5 million for child abuse prevention and treatment
- $350,000 for community-based primary prevention efforts
- $400,000 for child advocacy centers
- $537,500 for domestic violence shelters and non-residential services
“These crimes against children will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” Governor Parnell said. “We will do more to protect our children from those who prey on the most vulnerable.”