A new bill that combines the Youth PROMISE Act of U.S. Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein's (D-Ca.) Gang Abatement and Prevention Act has been stopped from quick passage in the Senate, says Youth Today. With 2011 appropriations and other major issues looming before Congress adjourns for the year, the hold reduces the possibility that the bill will be enacted. The proposal has been put on hold in the Senate, which probably means that one or more members object to new federal spending that the measure would authorize.
The National Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Coalition, which comprises dozens of advocacy organizations, appears to have settled on quiet opposition to the proposed legislation. Coalition co-chairs Tara Andrews and Ashley Nellis cited “concerns about a much worse bill that will likely be introduced next year.” The compromise bill “exposes youth under the age of 18 to prosecution and imprisonment as adults in the federal criminal justice system,” the coalition said. Scott told Youth Today he agreed that some of the compromise’s “provisions are problematic,” but he believes that Feinstein's provisions do not penalize anything that isn't already covered under federal racketeering or conspiracy laws.