The California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) University Police Department has received an $84,706 grant from Cal OES’ School Communications Interoperability Grant Program (SCIGP) to upgrade its handheld radios and enable communications with responding L.A County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) units during a campus emergency.
SCIGP grants provide funding for campuses in the California State University and California Community College systems to acquire interoperable communications technology compatible with modern and future systems.
The LASD is transitioning to a UHF communications platform, according to CSUDH University Police Chief Carlos Velez. With the grant, CSUDH University Police will replace its outdated gear with 10 compatible UHF handheld radios. The campus Dispatch Center and the department’s seven black and white patrol vehicles are already outfitted with the technology.
“Ensuring that our radio communication capabilities are fully compatible with local law enforcement is fundamental,” Velez explained. “During any campus emergency, the ability to coordinate our response via radio will reduce the risks to law enforcement and emergency services personnel, alert first responders of potential dangers, and allow for a coordinated response between multiple public safety agencies to any emergency on our campus.”
CSUDH has 21 sworn officers: Chief Carlos Velez, two lieutenants, four field sergeants, two detective sergeants, and 12 police officers.
California allocated $5 million in its 2019-20 budget to enhance communications interoperability technology systems, and Cal OES allotted $1,000,000 as a competitive grant to the two higher education systems.
Velez expects the department to have its new radios in officers’ hands by July 2020. “Preparation and training are a top priority for police officers, and so is having the proper equipment. In these times of restricted budgets, it is important to take advantage of any available opportunity to enhance our officers’ safety by providing them with updated and new equipment,” said Velez. “I am very appreciative of [University Police] Lieutenant Linh Dinh’s initiative and efforts in applying for this Cal OES grant. His commitment and dedication to our department and our entire campus community is truly commendable.”
Dinh led department’s SCIGP grant application process. “This grant award comes at the most opportune time. It gives our officers the ability to streamline emergency response efforts, without impacting the university’s bottom line,” Dinh said. “I would like to thank Cal OES for this award, and our team of dispatchers and records personnel who gathered the data used to complete the grant proposal.”