State PD may get $100K to step up Springfield presence - KCTV5

State PD may get $100K to step up Springfield presence

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SPRINGFIELD, MA (WSHM) -

Massachusetts senators want to see a higher state police presence in Springfield.

State Sen. James Welch and his fellow senators passed a supplemental budget for this fiscal year. In it there's funding for no less than $100,000 to go to the state police, as they see fit.

People in Springfield say they'd like to see the change.

"I think that would be a great thing, more presence I'm sure would be a really great thing," said Norman Boucher, Springfield.

"Absolutely I think so. I think there's a lot of things going on in the city, we definitely need more patrol," said Alexa Lopez who grew up in Springfield.

Now they may get what they're asking for.

The state senate passed a supplemental budget this week that may allow for $100,000 to go directly to the state police's efforts in Springfield.

Welch led the charge.

"What a better place to put it than the state police fund for the city of Springfield, so they can use it as they see fit."

Welch pointed to the highly successful state police C3 initiative in the North End, which is effectively cutting crime, as an example of what he'd like to see in Springfield's other neighborhoods.

"The local police department and the state police department working together with the community makes tremendous strides," Welch said.

Residents like Velma Cross want to see more of that in their own neighborhoods.

"In this area within the last few months, there's been so much crime going on. Where I live, someone got shot one weekend, and a couple weeks later someone else got shot," she said.

In two days, two men were killed in the Forest Park area not far from her home in May.

She says if she saw extra patrols on her street, she'd feel safer.

"I've got grandchildren, and people can't even walk the streets. I would be just grateful and happy," Cross said.

The supplemental budget still has to go through the House, and then to the Governor's desk, before it will be passed.

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