Holder: Sequestration Could Endanger Justice Department Anticrime Grants to States


With the federal budget-cut “sequestration” process starting today, the must alarming claims about the Justice Department–that prosecutors will drop cases and criminals will walk free–seem to be just that: alarms, reports NPR. Still, the cuts will be real. Konrad Motyka, who leads the FBI Agents Association, says the FBI faces $550 million in reductions, which translates into no more new cars and no new computers, for starters. Then, he says, “It’s going to reduce the ability of the FBI to hire new agents to replace those who are retiring, and it’s going to result in furlough days, which means days for which agents and all the support personnel and analysts within the FBI are not able to work.”

At a meeting in Washington this week, state attorneys general worried about their share of the pie under a huge federal grant program. Janet Mills, the attorney general in Maine, asked U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder about it. “One of the things that’s really going to be hit in the Justice Department’s budget is our grant-making ability,” Holder said. “And as we look at the legislation, our ability to share funds with our partners to support things that we have supported for years is really going to be impacted.” The National Criminal Justice Association, which represents states and localities in Washington, has compiled a list of some criminal-justice programs the White House says may be endangered by the sequestration: http://www.ncja.org/sites/default/files/documents/Sequestration-Imapct-on-States.pdf ncja

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