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What Gainesville, Hall County law enforcement want to do if they get federal COVID-19 assistance
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The Hall County Sheriff’s Office and Gainesville Police detailed this week what equipment or services they might purchase if they successfully receive supplemental funding from the Department of Justice.

The Bureau of Justice Assistance released the fiscal year 2020 Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program formula grant solicitation March 30.

The allocations for Hall County and the city of Gainesville were $62,400 and $43,690, respectively.

The Hall County Board of Commissioners approved the Sheriff’s Office’s application at the May 13 meeting.

The items requested with the $62,400 allocation include three 75-inch “touch screens with web cam for remote video conferencing,” five thermal cameras for body temperature scanning, five tripods and personal protective equipment.

The video conferencing equipment would be for patrol, training and the Sheriff’s Office’s investigators. Two of the thermal cameras would go to the jail, with one each allotted to the courthouse, courthouse annex and Sheriff’s Office headquarters.

The cameras would be used to identify anyone with an elevated temperature.

“It will be used as a screening measure to try and identify anyone that may need to have additional screenings prior to entering these locations in order to help prevent the spread of any virus. The purpose is to screen for temperatures in excess of (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines for COVID.  No data is stored or kept,” Booth wrote in an email.

The personal protective equipment includes masks, hand sanitizer, gloves and face shields.

Gainesville Police Chief Jay Parrish presented his request for approval to the Gainesville City Council at the May 14 work session.

Parrish said his plan would be to contract with a company that would “fog” the public areas and areas where employees meet in the city’s facilities.

Fogging involves using a chemical solution to disinfect an area.

“The solution takes about three to five minutes once it is dispersed in the air to settle on the surfaces, and it kills coronavirus and about any other microorganism that it comes in contact with,” Parrish said.

Parrish said he would plan to have a treatment in four- to six-week increments or if a known COVID-19 positive person enters a facility.

The cost is roughly 25 cents per square foot, so Parrish said he would hope to have a handful of treatments between now and December.