U.S. Attorney’s Office confirms $28.8M allocation to Puerto Rico
The U.S. Attorney’s Office confirmed the award of more than $28.8 million in federal grants to the Puerto Rico Department of Justice, the Puerto Rico Forensic Science Institute and community organizations addressing gender-based violence.
“The Puerto Rico U.S. Attorney’s Office works closely with our state law enforcement partners and community response stakeholders to effectively investigate and prosecute crimes and provide justice and protection to our victims of crime. Identifying available federal funding and ensuring that these funds are properly and efficiently expended enhances our collaborative law enforcement efforts,” said U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow.
These recent funding allocations from the DOJ’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) are intended to improve communities’ ability to curb violence, serve victims and youth, and achieve fair outcomes through evidence-based criminal and juvenile justice strategies, Muldrow said.
Among the most significant awards, the island’s Justice Department received $12.6 million for the VOCA Victim Assistance Formula Grant to improve victim services.
The Bureau of Justice Assistance granted $700,000 to establish a Local Law Enforcement Crime Gun Intelligence Center (CGIC) through the Puerto Rico Forensic Science Institute. That initiative also provides funding for the hiring of a special prosecutor focused on firearms prosecutions from CGIC intelligence.
Other awards include varied funds to multiple departments and organizations for different objectives, such as community development, forensic science improvement, victim compensation and combating gender-based violence:
$590,509 from the Title II Formula Grants Program to the Office for Socioeconomic and Community Development;
$89,310 from the John R. Justice (JRJ) Formula Grant Program to the Puerto Rico Department of Justice;
$136,058 from the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Reallocation Funds Program to the Puerto Rico Department of Justice;
$27,761 from the Prison Rape Elimination Act Reallocation Funds to the Office for Socioeconomic and Community Development;
$312,708 from the Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grants Program – Formula to the Forensic Science Institute;
$133,930 from the Project Safe Neighborhoods Formula Grant Program to the Puerto Rico Department of Housing;
$972,405 from Strategies to Support Children Exposed to Violence, to the Boys & Girls Club of Puerto Rico;
$2.3 million from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program to the Puerto Rico Department of Justice;
$272,117 from the Sex Offender and Registration Notification Act (SORNA) Reallocation Program to the Puerto Rico Department of Justice;
$700,000 from the Local Law Enforcement Crime Gun Intelligence Center Integration Initiative to the Forensic Science Institute;
$675,188 from the Formula DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction (CEBR) to the Institute of Forensic Sciences; and
$309,000 from the VOCA Victim Compensation Formula Grant to the Puerto Rico Department of Justice.
Several municipalities were awarded funds from the Byrne Discretionary Community Project Funding/Byrne Discretionary Grants Program: Loíza received $279,000; Vieques, $420,000; and Ciales, $92,000. The Puerto Rico Department of Justice was granted $2.3 million from the Byrne State Crisis Intervention Program Formula Solicitation.
To support crime victims, the Justice Department announced nearly $193 million in awards, including $6.5 million for the District of Puerto Rico, to enhance services and justice for survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking.
These grants include various amounts awarded to different organizations to support victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking, emphasizing cultural sensitivity and legal assistance.
Among those grants are:
$550,000 from the Fiscal Year 2023 Transitional Housing Assistance Grants for Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking Solicitation to Proyecto Matria Inc.;
$450,000 in Fiscal Year 2023 grants to Enhance Culturally Specific Services for Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking to Taller Salud Inc.;
$575,000 in Fiscal Year 2023 Grants to Enhance Culturally Specific Services for Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking to Hogar Ruth Inc.;
$400,000 in Fiscal Year 2023 Grants to Enhance Culturally Specific Services for Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking to Casa Juana Colón, Apoyo y Orientación a la Mujer Inc.;
$495,000 in Fiscal Year 2023 Sexual Assault Services funding to Hogar Ruth Inc.;
$750,000 in Fiscal Year 2023 Legal Assistance for Victims funds to Taller Salud Inc., and,
$858,652 in Sexual Assault Services and Formula Program funds to the Women’s Advocate Office.