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Grants will pay for Salem police patrols

SALEM -- The police department will be getting some help from the state to patrol the town’s streets.

Earlier this week, selectmen approved three grants from the state’s highway and safety department that will assist the town with traffic patrols.

The grants are for $6,292 each and are for red light enforcement, traffic enforcement and driving while intoxicated enforcement.

“Part of our job and responsibility is traffic enforcement and keeping the roads safe,” said Deputy Police Chief Shawn Patten. “With the call volume and everything we have going on, it does become a challenge at times to do as much as we should be doing.”

The grants pay for 100 percent of the salary and benefits for officers for additional traffic patrols, usually during peak volume times.

“These grants supplement our patrol force that is out there during these times,” said Patten. “Our regular guys out on the road might be going to accidents or other (incidents), but at least we know that we will have a dedicated patrol officer out there doing traffic enforcement.”

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