Funding Opportunity: Applications now open for 2019 Coverdell

**Application deadline: February 15, 2019**
See information below regarding deadline for required intent to apply

DCJ is now opening the application process for Colorado's 2019 Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grant Program funds which is awarded annually from the National Institute of Justice (NIJ).  Applicants for these funds must be a forensic laboratory, medical examiner's office or coroner's office which has an internal forensic lab and which is either fully accredited or seeking accreditation

For the purpose of Colorado's Coverdell state grant application, the definition of "forensic laboratory" is:
"A dedicated lab space/facility that forensically tests physical evidence submitted to investigate criminal cases."

 Awards for funded 2019 Coverdell projects will be for 12 months, January 1, 2020 - December 31, 2020. A delay in the start date may occur if the award to the state by NIJ is delayed.

To understand this Coverdell Program, here are some things to consider when applying:

  • The state receives an annual Coverdell Formula Grant award (non-competitive). Each year the amounts differ but we will use $250,000 as an estimate for 2019 and for the purposes of ballparking each lab's application amount.  Amounts will be adjusted up or down when we get information on our actual allocation amount. State and local Forensic Labs, medical examiners or coroners offices which provide forensic services are eligible to apply for amounts within their jurisdiction's portion of the state's Coverdell formula award. If two agencies within a single jurisdiction apply (e.g., medical examiner and forensic crime lab) they will share the portion of funds available for that area. 
  • Each jurisdiction's portion will be based upon the  jurisdiction's percentage of Part 1 Violent Crime of the statewide numbers reported in 2017 (latest data available). Open this document that shows the violent crimes reported within Colorado in 2017 (N= 19,828) further broken down by county and city. If there are multiple jurisdictions that a lab or office covers, add the number of violent crimes reported for those areas. The balance of funds will be awarded to the CO Bureau of Investigations to provide balance of state coverage. 
  • Coverdell grants are intended to either improve current operations in the quality and/or timeliness of forensic science or medical examiner/coroner's offices at the state or within units of local government. To that end, Colorado is prioritizing Coverdell funds for assisting applicants in achieving or maintaining accreditation**  (quality) as well as reduction of forensic analysis backlogs (timeliness). If an applicant is not accredited but is working on achieving accreditation, funds must be used for that purpose before addressing conducting forensic services to address backlogs or timeliness. In addition, NIJ is also asking that states and localities use these funds to specifically target the challenges which the opioid abuse crisis has brought to the forensic community. 


Because it may be necessary to contact potential applicants and ask for application submittal earlier than the due date, it is REQUIRED that you e-mail the information below to Meg Williams at the Division of Criminal Justice, no later than January 18, 2019 to indicate that you will be applying for funds.  FAILURE TO SUBMIT THIS INTENT TO APPLY INFORMATION MAY DISQUALIFY YOU FROM APPLYING.

  • Organization/Agency
  • Contact Person
  • Phone #
  • E-mail Address of Contact Person
  • Mailing Address
  • City and Zip Code:

Once you have sent in your intent to apply, please log into Zoomgrants ( to begin your application under the 2017-2019 OAJJA Combined Grant Programs. A PDF version of the full application instructions can be downloaded here.

 **Maintaining Accreditation: Funds may be used to prepare for laboratory accreditation by the ASCLD/LAB, FQS, NAME, the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA), International Association of Coroners & Medical Examiners (IAC&ME) or other, Paul Coverdell appropriate, accrediting bodies. Funds also may be used for application and maintenance fees charged by appropriate accrediting bodies.  Again, if an applicant is not currently accredited, that must be the focus of these funds before use for other areas.