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Reno homeless shelter, sex assault kit testing receive funding from county commission

Photo: U.S. Department of Justice

Funding for the downtown Reno homeless shelter and sex assault kit testing received approval at a Washoe County commission meeting on Tuesday.

They were among several items that received approval at the meeting Tuesday, Aug. 8.

Commissioners approved more than $2.4 million in funding for the Community Assistance Center, which provides support services for the homeless, including shelters for men, women and families.

They approved a more than $1.6 million grant from the Nevada Attorney General's office to hire six full-time DNA criminalists for one year, along with a laboratory remodel and the costs for testing sexual assault kits collected from January 2015 through June 2019.

According to a statement, the Washoe County Sheriff's Office Forensic Science Division expects to receive an additional 350 sexual assault kits a year for DNA testing. This change comes in response to the passage of AB 97, which requires testing to be completed with 120 days.

A county spokesman says the hiring of additional staff would help the division meet the new requirement.

Commissioners also voted to merge the Social Services Department and Senior Services Department, forming the Washoe County Human Services Agency.

The board unanimously approved the purchase of new voting system equipment and software as well, agreeing to a control of about $4.2 million with Dominion Voting Systems.

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