NEW CASTLE, Del. - On Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012, U.S. Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons and Congressman John Carney (all D-Del.), announced more than $1.6 million in funding for New Castle County communities from the Department of Justice. The Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistant Grant (JAG) Program's grants were awarded to the Town of Middletown, the Cities of Newark and Wilmington, New Castle County, the Delaware State Police and the Delaware Criminal Justice Council.
JAG funding is the leading source of federal justice funding to state and local jurisdictions. The JAG Program provides states, tribes, and local governments with critical funding necessary to support a range of program areas including law enforcement, prosecution and courts, crime prevention and education, corrections and community corrections, drug treatment and enforcement, planning, evaluation, technology improvement, and crime victim and witness initiatives. The grant award is named after Edward Byrne, who was a New York City police officer murdered in 1988, while guarding a material witness.
"All across the country, these JAG funds work to preserve and create public safety jobs and strengthen our existing forces," said Sen. Carper. "We cannot shortchange our future, which is why we will continue to fight for federal funding and projects that give Delaware communities the critical help they need."
"Keeping our communities safe is a top priority that takes dedicated and skilled first responders to do the job well," said Sen. Chris Coons, co-chair of the bi-partisan Senate Law Enforcement Caucus. "JAG funds allow law enforcement agencies to ramp up their technology, training and staffing. As a former New Castle County Executive, I saw first-hand how JAG grants made a significant and positive difference in the way police departments protected citizens. I congratulate all of the agencies that received this funding and I look forward to seeing the benefits of the many vital programs and services these grants will support."
"The JAG program is one of the most useful tools local law enforcement has to fight and prevent crime," said Congressman Carney, a former Chair of Delaware's Criminal Justice Council. "The funding from this program gives police officers and local governments the resources and flexibility they need to make our neighborhoods safer."
"The men and women of the New Castle County police force and I share a deep commitment to keeping all of our residents safe," said New Castle County Executive Paul G. Clark. "That's why we are excited and grateful to get these funds, which will help us put more, better-trained and better-equipped officers on the street to do what they do best – protect and serve our citizens."
A breakdown of the funding is below:
Delaware Criminal Justice Council: $1,056,793
The priorities Byrne JAG funds will continue to support with FY 2012 funding are: violence and shootings in the City of Wilmington (Hot Spot overtime); specialized courts (Drug Court and Mental Health Court); sex offender management (verification and notification); correctional officer retention and training; gang enforcement; and technology advances for the courts, law enforcement and the criminal justice system overall.
City of Wilmington: $241,000
The City of Wilmington will use these JAG funds for mobile field force equipment, 911 Center cooling system upgrades, high volume scanners, a Cold Case Investigator position, mobile printers and mobile lighting.
New Castle County: $230,930
The county will use the JAG funds to pay overtime for increased police presence in high-crime areas; to train front-line officers, supervisors, and senior managers in innovative and creative methods in law enforcement and officer safety; and to buy equipment for criminal investigations and for officer training and safety.
Delaware State Police: $75,000
To be used for a ballistics examiner.
City of Newark: $ 25,137
The 2012 JAG funds will be used for foot-patrol overtime to quell disorderly behavior and its associated problems, and to respond to spikes in crime in specific areas. Patrols will be conducted in residential areas of the city and business districts.
The Middletown will utilize JAG funds to purchase weapon ammunition including rifle and training rounds for its newly formed SWAT Team and Officers. The goal of the project is to improve law enforcement effectiveness.