FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OJP
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2001 202/307-0703
JUSTICE DEPARTMENT AWARDS VIRGIN ISLANDS OVER $7 MILLION IN 2001
WASHINGTON, DC -- In Fiscal Year 2001, the Department of Justice (DOJ) awarded more than $7 million to the Virgin Islands to fight crime, promote public safety, prevent juvenile delinquency, equip and train emergency responders and assist crime victims. DOJ’s first annual funding report highlights the funds provided to the state through the Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) and the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS). The Virgin Islands’ funding was part of a total of more than $5 billion that the Justice Department awarded to all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the five territories.
“The Justice Department is an active partner with state and local governments and non-profit agencies in making communities safe places to live and work,” said Attorney General John Ashcroft. “This $7 million demonstrates our solid commitment to the Virgin Islands’ significant local efforts.”
More than $4 million awarded to the Virgin Islands went to law enforcement, by far the largest funding category. $1.5 million went to juvenile justice programs, $720,000 to victims’ programs, $450,000 to community-based initiatives and $240,000 to substance abuse programs. The summary includes both large grants awarded by formula to the Virgin Islands and discretionary grants that are most often awarded on a competitive basis to non-profit or community agencies. Because many of the formula programs use population as a determining factor, heavily populated states received larger awards than less populated states.
The law enforcement category includes funding for a range of needs, from hiring police officers to training emergency first responders to purchasing equipment. Juvenile justice funds include money for improving states’ juvenile justice systems, promoting delinquency prevention through programs such as mentoring and funding in areas as diverse as preventing child abuse and reducing gang violence. The majority of funding for victims’ programs goes directly to the states to provide compensation and assistance for crime victims or to combat domestic violence. Substance abuse funds are used for prevention and drug treatment programs, including drug courts, while a large portion of community-based funding is provided through the neighborhood-focused Weed and Seed initiative.
“This report is a useful tool that allows state and local policymakers to see what federal resources are available within their states to promote public safety,” continued Ashcroft. “They can then determine additional needs or tap into existing programs.”
The Virgin Islands’ Fiscal Year 2001 funding report and the reports for other states and territories are available only on OJP’s Website at www.ojp.usdoj.gov/fy2001grants/. For more information about the Virgin Islands’ funding contact the Virgin Islands Administering Agencies located on OJP’s Website at www.ojp.usdoj.gov/state.htm. Information about OJP and its programs is available on OJP’s Website or by calling the National Criminal Justice Reference Service at 1-800/851-3420. Media should contact Linda Mansour in OJP’s Office of Congressional and Public Affairs on 202/616-3534.