Phase I was the first COPS Office program created to help meet the need for more officers on America's streets.
In 1993, Congress made available funds for the Police Hiring Supplement (PHS) program, a competitive program administered by the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) that awarded grants to law enforcement jurisdictions to hire additional officers.
The PHS program was able to fund only 1 out of every 10 applications. Phase I was created to fund some of the eligible jurisdictions not funded under PHS. To be eligible for a Phase I grant, a jurisdiction had to have applied for PHS funding, but been denied funding based on the limited PHS funds available. These law enforcement jurisdictions also had to demonstrate a public safety need for more officers, a community policing strategy, and a plan to retain the additional officers after federal funding had ceased. Of the 2,506 applicants, 392 were awarded grants that funded up to 75 percent of the total salary and benefits of each officer awarded over three years, up to a maximum of $75,000 per officer or 50 percent of the total salary and benefit costs. The remaining costs were paid by state and local matching funds.
First announced in October 1994, Phase I awarded a total of $200.2 million to 392 law enforcement agencies for the hiring of 2,779 new officers.