Senator Boxer: Funding for Law Enforcement   

Tuesday, July 1, 2008  

I am pleased to let you know that the Senate Appropriations Committee recently approved the Commerce-Justice-Science (S. 1745) appropriations bill for the coming fiscal year.  It includes two important provisions that will help our law enforcement officials in California. 

First, the Committee-approved bill contains $580 million for the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant Program, a substantial increase over the $170 million approved for FY2008.  These grants, which are administered by the Department of Justice, encourage partnerships among federal, state and local governments to create safer communities and streamline justice funding and grant administration.  They allow states, tribes, and local governments to support a broad range of activities to prevent and control crime based on their own local needs. 

The second good news is that the Committee-approved bill includes $400 million for the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program, or SCAAP.  Vitally important to California, SCAAP provides federal payments to state and local governments that have incurred costs for incarcerating undocumented criminal aliens.

I have been a long time supporter of both Byrne Justice Assistance Grants and SCAAP and thank Senator Dianne Feinstein for her work on the Appropriations Committee to include these important provisions.  While this bill still has several steps before becoming law, I am pleased that it represents important progress for local law enforcement agencies.

Sincerely,

Barbara Boxer, US Senator, California
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer