ROCKPORT, Maine — The Rockport Police Department is getting a dog, the Board of Selectmen decided Monday.
The board accepted a $20,000 donation that will fund the purchase of a dog, training for the dog and its handler and care of the animal.
The dog would be used primarily for drug searches. Last month the Police Department searched Camden Hills Regional High School’s parking lot for drugs after school officials found bath salts in the school. In that instance, Rockport police had to call in dogs from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, which is about 30 miles away.
“The idea is we would use this dog as our primary,” said Police Chief Mark Kelley. “We would still call in other dogs for assistance.”
Kelley said the dog could be purchased, trained and on duty as soon as next fall. Kelley hopes the dog also will serve as a recruiting tool, as no other local police departments have K9 programs.
The Board of Selectmen’s vote was 4-1 to accept the donation from The Cascade Foundation.