This week is National Police Week, and every year the Police Officer Association of Michigan team up with the Tune Inn to offer those in uniform a burger and a drink as a “Thank you” for their service. While we were at the Tune Inn, Denny McGrann, POAM’s lobbyist in Washington, sat down with POAM friend Dwight Zahringer to discuss what makes POAM and National Police Week so important.
The first thing McGrann said is that not only is he honored to be a part of the events taking place during National Police Week, but also be part of what POAM stands for. He said, “It’s an honor to work for Michigan law enforcement.” McGrann doesn’t just work with POAM lobbying for Michigan law enforcement’s best interests, however, but also as a point of contact for many Michigan legislators. He also said that he’s often asked by legislators about how specific legislation would affect Michigan law enforcement and by extension, the citizens of Michigan.
But above all, McGrann said, is that everyone from law enforcement agents to citizens needs to be represented fairly and adequately.
One example of how McGrann helps the POAM cause is the Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI). UASI was a post-9/11 security initiative set up by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to allocate federal funds to local communities to protect against terrorism. It was designed specifically to recognize that Homeland Security begins at home and on the local streets. Some of that money was being given to Michigan communities seeing that the state has one of the busiest international borders in the US, but congresspeople from California, New York, and other states wanted that money reallocated to their home states instead. If it wasn’t for McGrann’s and POAM’s work in Congress, some of the money going to Michigan law enforcement agencies would have been lost to the larger states. This is just one of the reasons our work in Washington DC is so important.
Aside from keeping UASI funds in Michigan, McGrann has also helped Michigan police departments and other law enforcement agencies secure federal funding for telecommunications and other projects. He said without POAM’s efforts in Washington, the interests of Michigan law enforcement agents would suffer. It’s important to make an investment in Michigan, McGran said.
While in Washington DC, Zahringer and POAM President Jim Tignanelli also visited the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to donate items to wounded soldiers, something POAM does every year.
Please take the time to listen to our podcast below to learn more about what POAM is doing in Washington DC to help our brothers and sisters in blue.
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