Justice Assistance Grant (JAG)

IMPORTANT NOTICE: JAG applications for the 2020 funding cycle are postponed while we await the outcome of litigation.

If you are interested in applying for a JAG grant, please review this helpful PowerPoint for important information as a supplement to the application instructions for each year.

Purpose of the Funds: The purpose of the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program, offered through the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), is to promote working partnerships between federal, state, and local governments to support a broad range of activities to prevent and control crime and to improve the criminal justice system.

Funding Priorities: To support the implementation of sustainable programs or provide resources that prevent or reduce or address crime, delinquency, and recidivism, or improve outcomes for those affected by crime, using innovative multidisciplinary, evidence-based, promising or best practices.

These funds are for start-up efforts; either to attempt a new project design or to replicate a successful project. Because of the 48-month funding cap, it is expected that State and local agencies will assume fiscal responsibility for projects when the federal JAG funding is no longer available. Applicants who are applying for continuation funds or expecting to apply for continuation funding in future years (up to 48 months) for the same project will be expected to apply each year and reduce their requested funding by 10% for each subsequent year. 

Applicants are highly encouraged to consider use of research, evidence-based or promising practices, programs and activities.

JAG funds can be used for state and local initiatives, technical assistance, training, personnel, equipment, supplies, contractual support, and information systems for criminal justice for any one or more of the following program areas:

  •     Law enforcement programs
  •     Prevention and education programs.
  •     Drug treatment programs.
  •     Corrections and community corrections programs (including reentry) .
  •     Planning, evaluation, and technology improvement programs.
  •     Prosecution and court programs.
  •     Crime Victims and Witness Protection (other than compensation).

Eligibility & Requirements: Units of government at the municipal, county and state level, including special districts, may apply to the Office of Adult and Juvenile Justice Assistance, Division of Criminal Justice, for a JAG grant. The JAG program strongly encourages partnerships, so applications may support projects involving combined teams of agencies at all levels and including non-profit organizations. However, non-profit organizations cannot apply directly for JAG funding*. Non-profit organizations may participate as a team member, with the government agency assuming overall responsibility and leadership for a project.

*The JAG Board finds that to prevent fragmentation of law enforcement it will accept limited grant applications from non-profit organizations representing statewide associations of local law enforcement. These non-profits must include in their applications how the grant will benefit statewide priorities adopted annually by the Board.

Solicitation Schedule: The Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) opens up for applications in January of each year (dependent on federal allocations). Generally, six weeks are given between the announcements and when applications will be due. The JAG Board meets to make preliminary funding decisions in May/June and then final decisions are made in July after the reconsideration process. As of 2018, grant periods are January 1 to December 31 of each year.