Department of Justice Seal

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

AG

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2000

(202) 514-2008

WWW.USDOJ.GOV

TDD (202) 514-1888


JUSTICE DEPARTMENT SEEKS $23.4 BILLION TO CONTINUE REDUCING GUN VIOLENCE,

ENHANCING COMMUNITY LAW ENFORCEMENT, CURBING DRUG USE, BATTLING CYBERCRIME,
AND BUILDING MORE PRISONS

Reno: "Our investment in anti-crime initiatives has achieved
unprecedented success,
but there is more we can accomplish"


WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Department of Justice announced today that it is requesting a total of $23.4 billion for Fiscal Year 2001 -- a $1.83 billion increase over FY 2000 levels -- to continue combating gun violence, enhancing community law enforcement efforts, curbing the cycle of drugs and crime, battling cybercrime and funding new prisons to incarcerate felons.

"Since the Administration's first budget request in 1993, the Justice Department has been investing in anti-crime initiatives that have emphasized building partnerships between federal, state and local governments," Attorney General Reno said. "It has been money well spent."

"Crime rates have fallen for seven years in a row -- for every type of crime, and in every region of the nation. There are more than 55,000 additional community police officers on the beat across the country. And, we have prevented more than 470,000 criminals and other prohibited persons from purchasing guns," added Reno. "We have achieved so much in the last seven years, but we can accomplish so much more."

Highlights of the increases in funding requested, include:

  • Combating Gun Violence -- $215. 9 million in increased funding to hire more federal, state and local prosecutors to further increase gun prosecutions, to bolster efforts to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and other prohibited persons, and to reduce youth violence.

  • Expanding Community Law Enforcement - $616.4 million in increased funding to support community policing initiatives and community crime prevention programs, to improve policing methods, and to help state and local law enforcement acquire the latest crime-fighting technology.

  • Breaking the Cycle of Drug Abuse - $171.4 million in increased funding for OJP's Zero Tolerance Drug Supervision Program, enhancing the Offender Reentry Program, and supporting Residential Substance Abuse Treatment program.

  • Battling Cybercrime - $37 million in increased funding to continue to wage the war against cybercrime and create a permanent network of experts dedicated to prevent and prosecute computer crime.

  • Building More Prisons - $2.4 billion in increased funding to construct, expand, activate, modernize and repair federal prisons to keep pace with our burgeoning inmate population.

COMBATING GUN VIOLENCE

"Over the past seven years, our aggressive actions to control gun violence have paid off," Reno said. "We have witnessed a 22 percent increase in the combined number of state and federal prosecutions since 1992, and a 36 percent reduction in gun-related homicides between 1993 and 1998. Today's budget request seeks an increased $215.9 million to continue vigorously pursuing those who violate our nation's gun laws and to provide state and local law enforcement with the technological assistance to solve gun crimes."

Highlights include:

  • Hiring Community Prosecutors - $150 million to hire or redeploy up to 1,000 community prosecutors in regions designated by the Justice Department as High Gun Violence Areas.

  • Prosecuting Firearms Offenders -- $14.5 million and 113 attorneys to investigate and prosecute firearms offenders, violent felons who possess guns, and armed drug traffickers. The funds will also be used to develop comprehensive strategic plans to prosecute, prevent and disrupt gun violence through the cooperative efforts of state and federal law enforcement, local government and community based groups.

  • Investing in Communications Infrastructure -- $11.36 million to help state and local law enforcement ballistics systems integrate into the National Integrated Ballistics Identification Network (NIBIN), and to eliminate the backlog in imaging ballistics data.

  • Supporting Communities - $40 million targeted at reducing juvenile gun violence, getting guns off the streets, and developing "smart gun" technology.

IMPROVING COMMUNITY LAW ENFORCEMENT

"Since 1993, we have increased assistance to state and local governments by 300 percent," Reno said. "In FY 2001, we plan to continue our commitment to providing resources to fight crime at the grass roots level."

The FY 2001 budget seeks $616.4 million in increased funding to improve community law enforcement efforts. Highlights include:

  • Supporting Community Policing -- $230.68 million is requested for the Public Safety and Community Policing Grants Program, bringing the total funding for this program to $650 million in 2001. The program includes funds to hire additional community police officers, and to support other innovative programs. The hiring funds will keep the COPS Program on course to pay for up to 150,000 officers by the end of 2005.

  • Advancing Community Crime Prevention Programs -- $70 million, of which $35 million is new funding under a new community crime prevention program. The funds will promote youth and school safety by establishing a value-base program between youth and police, and by supporting school-based problem-solving partnerships.

  • Promoting Policing Programs -- $30 million to enhance police recruitment, promote police integrity training, and create citizen problem solving academies.

  • Enhancing High-Tech Crime-Fighting Strategies -- $220 million to promote the interoperability of computer and communications systems within the law enforcement community; upgrade criminal history, criminal justice and identification record systems; improve forensic labs; provide communities access to sophisticated crime mapping tools, and, continue funding Technology Centers to help identify appropriate technological solutions for specific community problems.

BREAKING THE CYCLE OF DRUGS AND CRIME

"Supporting a drug habit is a common denominator for many who end up in prisons. In order to break the cycle of drug use and its consequences, inmates in our nation's prisons need access to drug treatment and a program that ensures their successful reentry into the community," said Reno.

This year, nearly 570,000 individuals will be released from state and federal prison and returned to communities across the nation. Today's budget request seeks more than $171 million in additional funding to help break the cycle of crime.

In addition to these funds, the Justice Department seeks a total of $1.7 billion for drug enforcement efforts.

Highlights include:

  • Funding OJP's Zero Tolerance Drug Supervision Program -- $75 million to support an initiative which will provide discretionary grants to states, units of local government, Indian tribes, and state and local courts to plan and implement comprehensive drug testing and treatment programs, as well as graduated sanctions for individuals within the criminal justice system.

  • Enhancing the Offender Reentry Program -- $60 million ($35 million new from COPS, $25 million new from OJP) to fund partnerships between law enforcement entities and community leaders to better prepare communities to handle inmates reentering society. OJP will administer this program jointly with the Department of Labor, which will apply $75 million to develop and operate jobs-related programs in the same communities.

  • Supporting Residential Substance Abuse Treatment Program -- a total of $65 million for the Residential Substance Abuse Treatment Program, which provides formula grants to states so state and local governments can develop and implement residential substance abuse programs within state and local correctional and detention facilities.

COMBATING CYBERCRIME

"The technology age has significantly changed the way everyone does business -- including criminals," Reno said. "For our society to be cyber-safe, law enforcement must keep pace with the criminals of the new millennium. Our budget seeks $37 million in additional funding to fight cybercrime and protect our nation's technological infrastructure from cyber-terrorism."

Highlights include:

  • Expanding the National White Collar Crime Center (NWCCC) - $8.75 million to train even more state and local law enforcement and regulatory agencies to meet the increasing incidence of computer crime. The funds will enable the Center to expand its curriculum, invest in distance learning technologies, act as a clearinghouse for all federal computer crime training, and offer a "yellow pages" of resources available in forensic computer science.

  • Developing 10 Regional Computer Forensic Labs -- $6 million to encourage and support the creation of regional computer forensic laboratories through partnerships among various federal, state and local capabilities.

  • Supporting Computer Analysis and Response Teams (CART) -- $11.4 million to hire 100 additional computer response team members who are dispatched to support investigations into computer-related crimes. The fund will also help develop the Automated Computer Examination System, which a data forensics tool that scan thousands of files for identification of known format and executable program files.

  • Prosecuting Child Porn and Other Cybercrime -- $8 million for U.S. Attorneys to vigorously prosecute cases referred by law enforcement task forces regarding individuals who produce child pornography; travel across state lines to engage in sex with children, and trade images of child pornography via the print media or over the Internet. The funding will also be used to prosecute those who use computers to steal trade secrets hackers, intrude into private computer networks, , embezzle funds, or misappropriate copyrighted works.

ENHANCING DETENTION AND INCARCERATION

"Tougher sentencing laws as well as an increase in prosecutions has resulted in a tremendous growth in our nation's inmate population," said Reno. "Our budget request seeks $2.4 billion in additional funding to build new prisons, expand existing facilities, and to contract with more state and local jails so criminals stay behind bars."

Total funding for prison-related costs is $4.4 billion. Highlights include:

  • Constructing New Prisons - $2 billion in increased funding, of which nearly $800 million is advance appropriations, to construct 17 prisons.

  • Activating Prison Facilities - $80.18 million to activate 4 facilities providing more than 3,800 additional beds scheduled to open in 2001, 3 high security facilities with 2 minimum security camps, and 1 Federal Detention Center.
  • Housing Detainees -- $84.47 million in increased funding primarily to augment the number of contract beds for short and long term non-U.S. citizen inmates and detainees.

EXPANDING COUNTERTERRORISM EFFORTS

"We have witnessed a dramatic increase in terrorist activity over the past seven years --both domestic and international," Reno said. "We are requesting an increase of $119.6 million to expand our efforts as well as those at the state and local level to fight terrorism and address hostile intelligence activities."

Highlights include:

  • $15 million for the Attorney General's Counterterrorism Fund to reimburse any Justice Department organization for costs incurred in support of countering, investigating, or prosecuting domestic and/or international terrorism and to finance reward payments in connection with such activities.

  • $19.1 million to fill 138 positions (63 agents) to enhance the FBI's ability to conduct national security investigations.

ENFORCING CIVIL RIGHTS LAWS

"The rigorous enforcement of our nation's civil rights laws remains one of our top priorities," Reno said. "We are seeking $16 million in new funding for the Civil Rights Division

-- a 19 percent increase above the 2000 enacted level."

Highlights of the total $107.8 million civil rights budget include:

  • Enforcing Civil Rights Laws -- 38 attorneys to expand the investigation and prosecution of criminal civil rights cases, increase fair housing and fair lending enforcement efforts, and encourage compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

  • Increase Funding for Community Relations Service - $2.3 million in increased funding to support additional conflict resolution teams, which would be dispatched to local communities to resolve racial or ethnic tensions.

PREVENTING ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION AND PROMOTING LEGAL ENTRY

"Since 1993, this Administration invested heavily in preventing illegal immigration, while promoting legal entry into the U.S.," Reno said." For the sixth straight year, the INS removed a record number of criminal and other illegal aliens. And, there are now more than 8,000 agents protecting our borders."

Today the Justice Department is requesting an increase of $523.2 million -- for a total $4.8 billion -- to provide the necessary resources to continue to strengthen INS's enforcement and service activities.

Highlights include:

  • Supporting the INS National Border Control Strategy -- $154 million for INS border management initiatives, which include resources to add 430 new Border Patrol agents, to deploy more Integrated Surveillance Intelligence Systems (ISIS), and to reform the pay structure for Border Patrol agents and Immigration Inspectors.

  • Funding New Facilities -- $76.1 million to plan and construct a new Border Patrol Station and Sector Headquarters space, as well as new detention facilities.

ENHANCING OTHER JUSTICE DEPARTMENT INITIATIVES

Fighting Crime Through Technology - $358 million to purchase new management software and hardware, upgrade wiretapping systems, enhance cryptology equipment, bolster DNA collection efforts and on-going research and development projects, devise data driven crime control strategies and improve the information sharing abilities of the Justice Department. $225 million will be used to reimburse the telecommunications industry for certain eligible costs associated with modifying their networks under the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA).

Protecting Indian Country - $82 million in increased funding to implement public safety initiatives on Indian Lands, including funding to increase the number of fully trained and equipped police officers in Indian country; improve the quality of the criminal justice system, including courts and detention facilities; enhance substance abuse programs; and, combat tribal youth crime.

Representing and Enforcing Federal Laws - $32.2 million to provide litigation resources to prosecute unlawful activities and protect the interests of the American people in court.

"I am proud of all we have accomplished since 1993. Today's budget request provides us with the opportunity to continue to build on these accomplishments and meet the law enforcement challenges of the 21 st Century," Reno added.

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