The Senate included $3.5 billion for anticrime programs in the economic stimulus bill agreed on by negotiators last Friday. Of the total, $1 billion would go to hire about 13,000 local police officers, $1.2 billion for Byrne justice assistance “formula grants” to states, $300 million for competitive anticrime grants, $300 million to fight domestic violence; $100 million for crime victims compensation and assistance, $50 million to states to track down cyber predators who prey on children. After the bill is passed, possibly Tuesday, the details must be negotiated with the House, which passed a similar measure. But the negotiated agreement means that the federal anticrime aid program, which was cut sharply by Congress in December 2007, likely will get a new infusion of funds.
The National Criminal Justice Association, which represents state and local anticrime agencies in Washington, said that “if passed, this wide-ranging funding will create and retain thousands of jobs throughout the criminal justice system in every state and territory and will help states and local communities combat repored spikes in crime linked to the economic downturn.”