Colorado Economic Recovery and Accountability

Press Release - Recovery Act Funds to Improve Public Safety

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WEDNESDAY, MAY 6, 2009

CONTACT:
Lance Clem, Colorado Department of Public Safety, 303-239-4415, Lance.Clem@cdps.state.co.us
Myung Oak Kim, Governor's Economic Recovery Team, 303-947-5708, myung.kim@state.co.us



GOV. RITTER WELCOMES RECOVERY ACT FUNDS DEDICATED TO IMPROVING PUBLIC SAFETY


Gov. Bill Ritter Jr. said today that the Department of Public Safety received a record-high number of nearly 200 applications for $16.4 million in public-safety funding from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, the landmark federal law that is designed to energize the economy, create jobs and invest in communities and infrastructure.

 

Gov. Ritter said he was heartened to see such tremendous interest from law enforcement agencies around the state for these funds.

 

"The Recovery Act will help our law enforcement agencies expand their efforts to crack down on drugs and protect our communities, said Gov. Ritter. "These funds will keep police officers on the street and help grow the economy and stabilize neighborhoods."

Local law enforcement agencies across Colorado last week submitted 191 applications for Recovery Act grants that will be distributed by the Colorado Division of Criminal Justice. The funds are part of an existing program known as the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program. This initiative helps states and local governments support a broad range of activities to prevent and control crime, from drug enforcement task forces, drug treatment for offenders and new technology systems for law enforcement agencies.

 

Grant recipients have struggled with decreasing funds in recent years, so local law enforcement agencies are excited about the opportunity to get more financial support through the Recovery Act. The Recovery Act offers Colorado agencies an additional $16.4 million, which is nearly eight times the level of funds the state received for the grant program last year, officials said. Applications for grants were due May 1, 2009.

 

"The Division of Criminal Justice is one the first state agencies to move forward with the process of getting Recovery Act funds into Colorado communities," said Peter Weir, Executive Director of the Department of Public Safety. "My agency is using an existing and proven process to manage the awarding of grant funds to state and local agencies. We will work hard to make sure the dollars are used effectively."

 

Applications requested almost $89 million. They will be reviewed by an advisory board in early July. Funding begins October 1, 2009, and grant funds can be expended for up to a two-year long project period.