FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          AG
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 22, 1996                          (202) 616-2777
                                               TDD (202) 514-1888
                                 
             ATTORNEY GENERAL PRESENTS HAMMER AWARDS 
                         AT DOJ "LAB DAY"

     WASHINGTON, DC -- Attorney General Janet Reno presented
Hammer Awards to three employee working groups from Justice
Department components as part of the Department's "Justice
Performance Review Lab Day," an event showcasing the achievements
of the Department's 16 reinvention labs.
 
     The Hammer Award is Vice President Gore's special
recognition to teams of employees which made significant
contributions in support of the President's National Performance
Review (NPR) principles of improving customer service, cutting
red tape, empowering employees, and getting back to basics.  

     "By accepting the challenge to re-invent government, these
employees are making government more efficient and improving the
way we perform our public responsibilities," Reno said during the
Lab Day event in the Justice Department's Great Hall.  Deputy
Attorney General Jamie Gorelick, who also attended, noted that
the employees "have taken the concept of creating a government
that works better and costs less and have made it a reality."  

     The three Justice Department teams receiving the award are:

     *  The SENTRI Reinvention Lab, for developing a secure,
     high-tech, automated border inspection system at Otay Mesa,
     California; 

     *  The Joint Automated Booking System (JABS) Lab, a multi-
     component effort which has significantly improved the
     prisoner booking process; 

     *  The Justice Prisoner Alien Transportation System (JPATS),
     which combines the resources of several DOJ components to
     schedule and transport prisoners more quickly, safely, and
     economically.

     Additional information on the awardees is attached.
96-523                         ### 

            JUSTICE DEPARTMENT HAMMER AWARD WINNERS
                         OCTOBER 22, 1996
     

The SENTRI Award

     The multi-agency DOJ reinvention laboratory known as SENTRI
(Secure Electronic Network for Travelers' Rapid Inspection)
reinvented a two-century-old method for inspecting border
crossers.  Designing the system for use by pre-screened, low-risk
international travelers who frequently cross the border, the
SENTRI team was led by the INS and Customs, and drew membership
from the FBI, DEA, and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern
District of California.  Several other Federal agencies, the
State of California, and several governments in Mexico assisted
in the effort.

     As crossers who have been approved for participation in the
SENTRI Project approach the border, they enter a "zone of
control" created by an assortment of bollards, iron posts,
electric gauges, and tire shredders which assure physical control
of traffic entering the U.S.  In-ground inductive loops, free-
standing light curtains, and other kinds of technology sense the
vehicle and activate an automatic vehicle identification system,
which checks data bases and matches digital photographs to
validate the intending crosser.  The system provides the
Government with more information and more security than ever
before.

     Yet, the system is speedy.  Before SENTRI, waiting times at
the Otay Mesa, California, test site averaged 45 minutes.  Now,
wait times in the SENTRI lane never exceeds three minutes.  In
addition, siphoning off low-risk travelers has cut the wait in
conventional inspection lanes to less than 20 minutes.  With
SENTRI, INS and Customs are able to concentrate their limited
resources on high-risk travelers.

The JABS Award

     The Joint Automated Booking Station, or JABS, Lab reinvented
offender processing procedures that had not changed significantly
in over half a century.  A joint undertaking of the Federal
Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Marshals Service, INS, FBI, and DEA, the
JABS Lab set out to streamline booking procedures through
automation, to reduce duplication of effort among the agencies
involved, and to provide a uniform data base which could be used
to improve investigations and identify repeat offenders.

     Before JABS, offenders moving through the criminal justice
system were booked by each agency they encountered.  For a single
arrest, this often resulted in numerous bookings involving
photographing, fingerprinting, and recording biographical
information, procedures which were all done manually.  Through
collaboration and prototyping, the JABS Lab automated and
streamlined this tedious process.

     The Joint Automated Booking System has delivered three clear
benefits:  increased speed, the elimination of duplication, and
greater access to more reliable data.  An automated booking can
be completed in one quarter of the time required for the manual
booking process.  By eliminating duplication, 305 separate data
elements compiled under the old system have been reduced to 61,
five photographs have been reduced to one, and 15 sets of paper
fingerprints have been reduced to one set of highly reliable
electronic prints.  Finally, JABS creates a single comprehensive
electronic record of data the first time it is collected;  this
record can be accessed by other law enforcement agencies for
investigative or tracking purposes.

The JPATS Award

     The Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System
(JPATS), an innovative partnership among the U.S. Marshals
Service (USMS), the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS),
and the Federal Bureau of Prisons, carries prisoners and
detainees under federal jurisdiction more safely and efficiently.

     Before JPATS, the movement of detained aliens - for transfer
between institutions, for deportation and removal from the
country, and for relocation to lower-cost detention - was managed
solely by the INS, while the transportation of other federal
prisoners was the responsibility of the USMS.  As the prison
population grew over the last decade, and as enforcement
priorities changed, both the number of prisoners and their
destinations rose dramatically.  It became evident that the
collective resources of the Department needed to be fully
employed, that regular schedules needed to be established, and
that planes needed to be filled to capacity to best employ
limited resources.

     JPATS was the solution.  By combining the equipment and
personnel resources of the USMS and INS, and by combining the
movement of alien prisoners with other kinds of prisoners,
flights were filled.  These changes resulted in lower per-
passenger costs, faster completion of prisoner movements, and
more efficient use of valuable prison bed space.  Moreover,
agreements were executed with military, state, and local law
enforcement entities to carry prisoners under their jurisdictions
on a space-available basis, reducing their costs while ensuring
maximum capacity loads on the Government's planes.

     The JPATS now serves over 40 cities nationwide.  It carried
180,000 passengers in its first year of operation, a 20 per cent
increase in productivity.  It currently averages 400-500
"reservations" every day of the year.