Alaska Department of Public Safety receives $3M for criminal records system updates

Last week the state announced that the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) awarded more than $3.3 million in grant funding to the Alaska Department of Public Safety (DPS) to improve criminal records systems. 

About $1.5 million of the funding came through the FY2023 National Criminal History Improvement Program (NCHIP), and $1.8 million came from the FY2023 National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Act Record Improvement Program. 

“We are proud to announce this funding for the Alaska Department of Public Safety as it helps state law enforcement continue to improve their systems and responses,” said U.S. Attorney S. Lane Tucker for the District of Alaska, in the press release about the funds.  

The NCHIP funds will support the DPS and the Alaska Court System in their work to ensure the state’s criminal history repository is complete and accurate. This money will also help fund the replacement of the Alaska Public Safety Information Network (also known as APSIN) with a new repository. State officials say the network as it is now is outdated, and the new repository will improve service to the state’s law enforcement officers and dispatchers. 

“Working with state and local law enforcement to improve public safety in Alaska is one of our main priorities, and these funds are just a small portion of our continued collaboration to keep our communities safe and serve the people of Alaska,” said Tucker. 

The funding from the NICS Act Record Improvement Program will assist DPS in keeping the state’s contributions to the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System accurate and up to date. 


“This federal funding will ensure that Alaska’s criminal records systems are accurate and available to serve both Alaskans and our law enforcement officers across the state,” said James Cockrell, Alaska Department of Public Safety commissioner, in the press release.  

“The investments enabled by these grants will keep our state on the cutting edge of technology, while protecting Alaskans’ U.S. and state constitutional rights,” Cockrell said. 

The Office of Justice Programs provide federal funding, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, assist victims, uphold the rule of law and advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice.