Council approves grant to boost capabilities of Grand Junction bomb squad
A $290,000 bomb containment unit should help the Grand Junction Police Department Bomb Squad safely detonate or transport explosive materials.
Grand Junction City Council members on Monday night unanimously gave their approval for the department to receive a grant to obtain the item.
“It will make it much safer for the community,” Grand Junction Police Chief John Camper said. “It can be put in the containment unit by our robot.”
The Northwest All Hazards Emergency Management Region, through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, put $250,000 toward the purchase. The 21st Judicial District Forfeiture Board contributed $40,000.
Grand Junction’s device will be one of four in the state. The regional bomb squad answered 70 calls for service since 2009.
“I don’t think people realize how busy they are,” Camper said of bomb squad officers.
In other business, council members approved funding through Community Development Block Grants for 9 nonprofit agencies.
The awards were $50,000 for the Grand Valley Catholic Outreach for major appliances for the new housing development St. Martin’s Place; $50,000 for the Business Incubator Center to develop a program that caters to entrepreneurs; $101,198 to the Grand Junction Housing Authority to upgrade units at the Courtyard Apartments; $10,000 to Mesa Developmental Services to upgrade furnaces at three group homes; $30,000 to HomewardBound to remodel mens’ and womens’ bathrooms; $30,000 for The Center for Independence to upgrade a kitchen to comply with Mesa County Health Department standards; $9,371 to Strong Families, Safe Kids for energy efficiencies on a new building; $8,000 to St. Mary’s Hospital Senior Companion Program to reimburse volunteers for mileage traveling to clients’ homes; and $10,000 to St. Mary’s Hospital Foster Grandparent Program to reimburse volunteers for mileage traveling to local schools.