Delaware Governor Jack Markell and Senators Tom Carper and Ted Kaufman were on hand Monday to announce funding for the Delaware Criminal Justice Council, (CJC) courtesy of the Recovery Act.
More than $6.6 million in funding for the CJC is being made available through the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program. This federal grant was first announced by Attorney General Eric Holder in March which allows states and local governments to support a broad range of activities to prevent and control crime and improve the criminal justice system. Some $2 billion in federal funds were made available to state and local officials in the JAG Program, where approximately 60 percent of the funds will go to the state and 40 percent will go directly to local agencies of the law.
New Castle County Executive Chris Coons and Delaware Criminal Justice Council (CJC) Executive Director Jim Kane joined the list of state and federal officials at the New Castle County Police Headquarters where the money will be used to jump-start the state’s five-year crime control and prevention strategy. The funds will also help preserve and create law enforcement and public safety jobs across Delaware, as well as fund innovative new projects and much-needed equipment upgrades.
“This funding will create needed jobs and help us fight crime,” Gov. Markell said. “I consider keeping Delawareans safe a core responsibility of state government, and it is clear that this funding in the federal economic recovery package for the Criminal Justice Council will improve Delaware’s public safety.”
Senator Kaufman agreed, saying, “Federal investment in local law enforcement is a ‘two-fer’ – not only does it keep our families safe, it creates good paying jobs for quality public servants at the same time. Senator Carper and I have said it several times: this economy will not get on track until we stop these massive job losses. That’s our main focus in Washington and that’s why we voted for the recovery package.”
According to Recovery.gov, the procedure for allocating JAG grants is formula-based on population and violent crime statistics, in combination with a minimum allocation to ensure that each state and territory receives an appropriate share of funding.
“We are grateful to Senators Carper and Kaufman and the CJC for this funding that will have a significant impact for New Castle County,” said County Executive Chris Coons. “This will allow us to continue funding for an additional two years the two officers we have working in aggressive gang enforcement and Operation Safe Streets,” he added.