FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE BJA
Monday, October 30, 2001 202/307-0703
JUSTICE DEPARTMENT AWARDS OVER ONE-HALF BILLION DOLLARS
TO JURISDICTIONS THAT INCARCERATE CRIMINAL ILLEGAL ALIENS
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- All 50 states, the District of Columbia and two U.S. territories will receive federal funds totaling over $550 million from the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) to help pay the costs of incarcerating illegal aliens who have committed serious crimes in the United States and have been convicted and sentenced for their felony offenses.
The State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP), authorized under the 1994 Crime Act and administered by OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) in conjunction with the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), provides financial assistance to states and localities in paying the costs of incarcerating illegal aliens in state and local correctional systems. While the size of the payments made through the SCAAP program is tied to the number of criminal aliens incarcerated and to corrections officers’ salaries within a jurisdiction, the funds do not have to be used in prison systems. SCAAP funds go back into the state’s or locality’s general fund and can be used for any purpose.
“The expenses of incarcerating illegal criminal aliens are very real costs that deeply impact local and state governments,” said Assistant Attorney General Deborah J. Daniels. “Since the 1994 Crime Act, OJP has awarded approximately $3.3 billion to states and localities to pay for housing criminal aliens. Helping states bear these costs is just one part of an overall strategy to manage and improve upon our existing network of borders and enforce our current immigration policies.”
Program applicants increased by 25 percent this year, and awards increased from 413 in FY 2000 to 517 in FY 2001. State and local awards to Arizona ($23 million), California ($225 million), Florida ($28 million), New York ($94 million) and Texas ($45 million) total approximately 75 percent of the available FY 2001 funding. Los Angeles County and New York City were two of the largest localities to receive awards totaling $29 million and $32 million, respectively. In addition, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico will receive funds.
“We’ve streamlined the electronic application process and will continue to work closely with states and localities to encourage program participation and ensure accurate and complete reporting,” added Daniels.
Eligible applicants included states and localities that exercised authority with respect to the incarceration of an undocumented criminal alien. List of the FY 2001 SCAAP recipients. Additional information about BJA or its programs can be found on its Internet Website at: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bja. For additional information about the OJP and its programs, go to the OJP Website at: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov.
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For additional information, contact Sheila Jerusalem at 202/616-3227