The Mashpee Wampanoag Police Department announced last week that three grants totaling more than $750,000 have been awarded to the department.
The grants come as a housing development on tribal reservation land in Mashpee is expected to increase the calls for service from the tribal police department.
“For the first time in hundreds of years, tribal members are living on [our] own land,” the department said in a December 29 Facebook post announcing the grants. “With the 42-unit housing development currently on the reservation, we will have an increase in calls for service.”
The department’s chief of police, Kevin M. Frye Sr., said the grants will help support substance abuse prevention and treatment efforts and community policing initiatives as the tribe exercises its sovereignty over tribal lands.
“It secures needed funding to help with that sovereignty over the land to govern the property,” Chief Frye said. “It shows the tribe moving forward.”
The grants include a $500,000 Community Oriented Policing Services grant and a $244,000 Bureau of Justice Assistance grant from the US Department of Justice, and a $37,500 grant from the state.
The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe is a federally recognized tribe with sovereignty over 321 acres of reservation land in Mashpee and Taunton.