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Frequently Asked Questions

These questions are designed to provide you with explanations and guidance to assist you in completing the COPS Hiring Progress Report (CHPR) for your hiring grant(s) formally known as Department Annual Progress Report (DAPR). If you are having difficulty understanding how to respond and cannot find a sufficient answer to your question in this FAQ document, then please do not hesitate to contact an Information Specialist at 800.659.7379.
The beginning of the CHPR includes a summary of all the COPS hiring grants your agency has been awarded for which you must complete a report. This information will be used in conjunction with the answers you provide to determine the progress your agency has made with your grant(s).

1. What is the difference between the sections of the CHPR on Active Hiring Grants and Expired Hiring Grants? Which section of the report do I need to submit?
Both sections of the report are used to determine the progress your agency has made with its hiring grant(s) during the reporting period. Therefore, if your agency has an active grant (the grant has an end date past 12/31/08), then your agency must fill out the section for Active Hiring Grants. Similarly, your agency must fill out the section for Expired Hiring Grants if your agency has an expired grant (any grant that has an end date before 1/1/2009 and is not yet closed). Therefore, your agency may be required to fill out the sections for Active Hiring Grants and Expired Hiring Grants in the same reporting period, for different grants. Unless your agency has both active grants AND expired grants, you will only be able to access the appropriate section of the report.

2. What is the difference between an active grant and an expired grant?
An active grant is a grant that is in the process of being utilized. Your agency may have all of the awarded positions currently filled, but has not yet had the grant position(s) filled for the 36-month grant period. Or, your agency may not have all the positions currently filled, but is in the process of filling them so you can use and complete the grant. Conversely, typically an expired grant is a grant in which all awarded positions have been filled for the 36-month grant period, and all funds have been spent for approved costs. Expired grants are surveyed to determine if the grant positions have been retained through the retention period and if your grant is eligible for closeout.

3. What if I have more than one grant?
You will complete one survey for all hiring grants; however, if your agency has grant(s) that are in both the active and expired time periods, then you will be required to fill out both sections of the CHPR.

4. How long will I have to report on this grant?
The COPS Office tracks hiring, retention, and redeployment after the official end date of your grant. The official closeout of your grant(s) may not take place immediately following the end date or the retention period. For information about the closeout process, please visit http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/Default.asp?Item=104.

5. What does "as of December 31, 2008" mean?
December 31, 2008 is the date on which you should base your answers. For example, if you have one UHP position and it was initially filled on January 1, 2008, and was still filled on December 31, 2008, then your answer would be that you had one UHP position filled. If the UHP position was vacant on December 31, 2008 and not filled until January 1, 2009 or later, you must answer "0" for positions filled and respond to the questions regarding whether you intend to fill the position or not.

6. What does filled/hired mean?
This means that the COPS-funded positions were filled as of December 31, 2008. In other words, an officer was actually hired to fill the COPS grant-funded position(s) as of that day.

7. What does intend to fill mean?
This means that your agency plans to fill any COPS-funded vacancies. It is quite common for agencies to experience periods of vacancy during the standard 36-month grant period due to delays in hiring, officer turnover, etc. It is expected that your agency will take active and timely steps to fill any vacancies that occur during the 36-month grant period.

8. If I originally accepted the grant, but withdrew or plan to withdraw, do I still have to submit a report?
Yes. If you have been contacted to complete a CHPR, the COPS Office has not officially withdrawn your grant and you must complete the report. Please complete the report and contact your Grant Program Specialist at 800.421.6770 to ensure that you have submitted the proper paperwork to withdraw from the grant.

9. Do I have to submit a report even if I never accepted the grant and plan to decline it?
Yes. If you have been contacted to complete a CHPR, the COPS Office has not officially withdrawn your grant and you must complete the report. Please complete the report and contact your Grant Program Specialist at 800.421.6770 to ensure that you have submitted proper paperwork to decline or withdraw from the grant.

10. Do I have to submit a report even if my agency has disbanded?
Yes. If you have been contacted to complete a CHPR, the COPS Office has not officially withdrawn your grant and you must complete the report. Please complete the report and contact your Grant Program Specialist at 800.421.6770 to ensure that you have submitted proper paperwork notifying COPS that your agency has disbanded.

11. How do I withdraw/decline a grant award?
You must notify COPS of your intention to withdraw. Please contact your Grant Program Specialist for specific instructions or visit the COPS Office website at http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/Default.asp?Item=101. A letter signed by the law enforcement executive and/or government executive detailing why your agency wishes to withdraw or decline the grant must be received by the COPS Office before your grant can be withdrawn. Additionally, if your agency originally accepted the grant, then you must also submit a final Federal Financial Report (SF-425) along with the letter requesting the withdrawal.

12. What should I do if any of the expired grant position(s) are vacant during the retention period?
Your agency is required to retain the COPS grant position(s) with local funding for at least one full budget cycle after the grant has expired. If a position becomes vacant during the retention period, your agency must still backfill this position in order to meet the retention requirement. Your agency should take active and timely steps to fill the vacant position(s). If your agency is unable to fill the position(s), you should contact your Grant Program Specialist at 800.421.6770 to seek further guidance.

13. What should I do if any of the expired grant position(s) were NEVER filled during the grant period?
Since your grant is expired, you should contact your Grant Program Specialist at 800.421.6770 to modify your grant to negate the unused position(s) or withdraw from the grant if none of the grant positions were ever filled.

14. What should I do if my agency has not yet completed the 36-month grant period for any of the expired grant position(s)?
Your agency should contact your Grant Program Specialist at 800.421.6770 to discuss concerns regarding this issue.

15. How do I find out about other grants, applications, waivers, etc.?
Information about COPS grants can be found on the COPS website, http://www.cops.usdoj.gov, or by contacting the COPS Response Center at 800.421.6770.

16. How do I get in touch with my Grant Program Specialist (GPS)?
Your GPS is listed on the COPS website, http://www.cops.usdoj.gov, or you can reach your GPS by contacting the COPS Response Center at 800.421.6770.

17. What does SARA type problem solving mean?
SARA - A commonly used problem-solving method which include Scanning, Analysis, Response and Assessment. It is an analytical approach for stopping or preventing crime. This problem- solving strategy is based on:

  1. identifying and prioritizing a specific problem by scanning through multiple data sources;
  2. conducting a thorough analysis of the problem;
  3. formulating a response to the problem based on the analysis results;
  4. assessing the impact of the response on the problem.

18. What is the officer retention requirement?
Hiring grantees must plan to retain the additional federally funded position(s) at the conclusion of the hiring grant-funding period. The federally funded position(s) must be over and above locally funded officer position(s) that would have existed regardless of the grant.
Your agency must retain the position(s) for one full local budget cycle after the grant period, and that retention period must not overlap with the active 36-month grant period. For example, if the 36-month UHP grant period ended on June 30, 2008 and your 12-month local budget cycle did not begin until October 1, 2008, then your agency would be required to retain the COPS positions from July 1, 2008 until September 30, 2009 (a total of 15 months).

19. How can I complete COPS Hiring Progress Report online?
Please access the COPS Office website at www.cops.usdoj.gov and click on account Access at the top right hand side of the page. Log in by typing your user name and password. Once you are logged in, click on COPS Hiring Progress Report and follow the instructions to complete your report.

20. How do I obtain user name and password?
If you do not have your user name and/or password, please contact the COPS Office Response Center by phone at 1-800-421-6770 (from Monday through Friday between 9 AM and 5 PM eastern time) or email the Response Center at egov.issues@usdoj.gov.

 

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