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VIPD Defends Its $62 Million Budget for Fiscal Year 2021

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — The Virgin Islands Police Department completed its Fiscal Year 2021 budget hearing today.

Commissioner Trevor Velinor and his leadership team defended the budget of $62,039,293 to fund the department for next fiscal year, beginning October 1. 

The team is asking for funding to support the men and women of VIPD, “who have often been tasked to do more with less,” Velinor said.

During the hearing, members were asked a series of questions related to the consent decree, strategic plan, and federal grants to name a few.

“VIPD has made significant strides to be released from the consent decree, complying with more than 90 of 104 paragraphs,” he said.

Through continuous training, monitoring and accountability, the department said it is “hopeful the end of the consent decree is near.”

A strategic plan to span the next three to five years is being developed and will incorporate employee and community engagement.

To build community trust, all stakeholders must play a role in its creation. To ensure strategies and processes that are established are sustainable, the plan must be crafted and completed in phases.

As a recipient of multiple federal grants, the department must adhere to federal guidelines. Project proposals have been submitted and requests for subgrantees have gone out, according to the VIPD.

“We must be good stewards of our finances, maximizing the strength of every dollar spent,” Commissioner Velinor said.

He projects VIPD will spend approximately $10 million less this fiscal year than was expended last fiscal year.

The department said that it is thankful to the taxpayers of the territory and “must do right by them.”

“The employees of VIPD remain committed to provide services and protection to our residents and visitors,” he said. “Communication, professionalism, and accountability continues to be emphasized by the department.”

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