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U.S. Dept. of Justice assigns $8.9M to aid Puerto Rico’s public safety agencies

Puerto Rico’s public safety agencies will get nearly $8.9 million from the U.S. Department of Justice, to respond to the challenges posed by the outbreak of COVID-19.

The agency will disburse a total of $850 million across the U.S. mainland through its Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program, authorized by the recent stimulus legislation.

It will allow eligible state, local and tribal governments to apply immediately for the funds, which the “department is moving quickly to make awards, with the goal of having funds available for drawdown within days of the award.”

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office and our federal and state law enforcement partners are working tirelessly, investigating cases, and making arrests even during these trying times,” said U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow.
“These funds made available by Congress will help us continue to fight for the citizens of Puerto Rico to protect them from criminals who threaten their safety,” he said. 

The solicitation, posted by the Bureau of Justice Assistance in the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), will remain open for at least 60 days and be extended as necessary. 

OJP will fund successful applicants as a top priority on a rolling basis as applications are received. Funds may be used to hire personnel, pay overtime costs, cover protective equipment and supplies, address correctional inmates’ medical needs and defray expenses related to the distribution of resources to hard-hit areas, among other activities.

Grant funds may be applied retroactively to Jan. 20, 2020, subject to federal supplanting rules, the agency said.
Agencies that were eligible for the fiscal year 2019 State and Local Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program are candidates for this emergency funding.

A complete list of eligible jurisdictions and their allocations can be found here.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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