Six veterans of military service and residents of one county and four communities, including Cameron, will be getting some temporary help from a federal grant program.
It was announced this week that West Virginia will be receiving $635,000 in federal Community Oriented Policing Services grants. The money is to be used to hire military veterans as law enforcement officers. Raleigh County will get two sheriff's deputies and Cameron, Quinwood, Star City and Summersville each will get money for a police officer.
Cameron's share of the COPS grant is $101,201. Paired with a local match of 25 percent of the total cost, the funding can be used to pay an officer for as much as three years, according to federal guidelines.
But what happens after that? Either Cameron and the other localities will come up with full funding for law enforcement officers - or lay off those paid with grant money.
It made sense for Cameron to seek a COPS grant, especially because of the increased need for local law enforcement officers resulting from the gas drilling boom. Congratulations to town officials for their success.
But Cameron, with a temporary need, probably is not typical of COPS grant recipients. Such federal funding initiatives too often put local and state governments in the position of eventually having to raise taxes or reduce services when the grant money runs out.