You are on page 1of 4

IACP Capitol Report

Volume 4, Issue 3 February 9, 2005

FY 2006 Budget Released; State and Local Law


Enforcement Assistance Programs Face
Massive Cuts, Elimination
On February 7, President Bush released his proposed budget for fiscal year 2006. Overall, funding levels for assistance
programs that are primarily designed to assist state and local law enforcement agencies were slashed by $1.467 billion
when compared to FY 2005. This includes funding for assistance programs at both the Department of Justice and
Department of Homeland Security.
Department of Justice:
Funding for the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) program, which was established last year by
combining the Byrne grant program and the Local Law Enforcement Block grant program, was completely eliminated.
This program received $634 million last year.
In addition, the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program was significantly cut in the proposed budget.
The budget proposes $118 million for the program, down from $606 million last year, an 80% decrease. However, $96
million of this amount is actually funding that will be carried over from the FY 2004 budget. As a result, this means that
the President has only proposed $22 million in new funding for the COPS Office.

In FY 2005, these two primary law enforcement assistance programs received $1.24 billion. The
Administration’s budget would fund these crucial programs at just $118 million – a cut of $1.12 billion or 90%.
Comparison of FY 2005 and Proposed FY 2006 Funding Levels

Program FY 05 Omnibus Proposed FY 2006 Change from FY 05 Percentage Change

COPS $606 Million $118 Million -$488 Million -80.5%

JAG $634 Million $0 -$634 Million -100%

Total $1.24 Billion $118 Million -$1.12 Billion -90.5%

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

1 FY 2006 Budget Released; State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance Programs Face Massive Cuts, Elimination

4 Senate Begins Confirmation Hearings on Chertoff

4 Alberto Gonzales Confirmed as Attorney General

Legislative Update 1
The proposed FY 2006 budget continues a steady decline in funding levels for these programs in recent years As noted
in the graph below, the funding levels for these programs have declined more than $2.3 billion since FY 2002.

Funding Levels for COPS/LLEBG/BYRNE/JAG


FY 2001 - FY 2006
2500
2479

2186 2191
2000
Millions of Dollars

1640
1500

1240
1000

500
118
Proposed

0
FY 2001 FY 2002 FY 2003 FY 2004 FY 2005 FY 2006

In addition, the proposed budget would also eliminate funding for both the Juvenile Accountability Block Grant program,
which received $55 million in FY 2005, and the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP), which assists state
and local governments with the costs of jailing illegal immigrants who have committed crimes not related to their
immigration status. This program received $305 million in fiscal 2005.
However, proposed funding for grants under the Violence Against Women programs remains fairly constant at $363
million, down slightly from $387 million in FY 2005. In addition, the Administration is seeking $177 million, up from $110
million, to help criminal justice professionals make better use of DNA evidence. Of this amount, $151 million is
designated to help clear the backlog of unanalyzed DNA samples. Finally, the budget proposes $58 million to upgrade
criminal records, up from $25 million in FY 2005.
Department of Homeland Security:
Overall, the Department of Homeland Security would receive a 7% increase over last year’s funding. However, despite
the overall budget increase, the proposed budget includes significant cuts to two of the primary assistance programs
from which law enforcement agencies are eligible to obtain funds: the State Homeland Security Grant program (SHSG),
and the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI). Funding for the Law Enforcement Terrorism Prevention Program remains
steady at $400 million.
SHSG funds are distributed to the states on a formula basis, 80% of which must be passed on to local governments.
These funds are not designated solely for law enforcement use, but can be used to fund a wide range of other public
safety agencies like fire departments and EMS who have responsibilities related to preparing or responding to terrorist
attacks. The proposed funding level is $820 million, down 25% ($280 million) from last year.
The Administration is also proposing changing the formula for distributing these grants, a move Congress has rejected in
the past. Under the budget, every state would receive 0.25 percent of the total spending, down from the current 0.75
percent. A revised formula would then allocate funds based on the threat of terrorism, which would result in a loss of
funds for small states and rural areas.

Legislative Update 2
There is also a decrease in funding for the Urban Area Security Initiative, from $885 million to $820 million, a
7.3% decrease. This program allocates funds to urban areas selected by the Department of Homeland Security based
on a formula that takes into account factors such as critical infrastructure, population density, and credible threat
information.

However, the vast majority of law enforcement agencies are not eligible to receive funds under the urban area grant
program, and will be forced to compete for funding assistance from a much smaller pool of money. Once the urban
grants are excluded, the proposed funding levels for the vast majority of state and local public safety agencies is reduced
by almost 19% from FY 2005 levels, and almost 45% from FY 2004.
Combined DOJ/DHS Funding Proposals:
When combined, the proposed FY 2006 funding level for DoJ /DHS assistance programs is $2.158 billion. This is a
reduction of $1.467 billion or 40% from the combined FY 2005 level of $3.625 billion. It represents a decrease in
$2.55 billion or 54% from FY 2004.

Funding Levels of Primary Direct Law Enforcement Assistance


DOJ Programs: COPS/LLEBG/BYRNE/JAG
DHS Programs: SHSG, LETPP,UASI,SLTP

5000 4908

4500
4191
Millions of Dollars

4000

3625
3500

3000

2500 2158

2000
FY 2003 FY 2004 FY 2005 FY 2006

Next Steps:
The President’s submission of his budget proposal represents the first step in the federal budget process. Over the next
several weeks, the House and Senate Budget Committees will begin work on drafting the Congressional Budget
Resolution. This non-binding document serves as a statement of Congress’s priorities in the budget process. At the
same time, the various subcommittees of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees will begin their efforts to
craft the thirteen appropriation bills that actually fund the federal government. Throughout this process, the IACP will be
working closely with Members of Congress and their staff in an effort to ensure that the needs of the state and local law
enforcement community are adequately addressed in FY 2006.

Legislative Update 3
Senate Begins Confirmation Alberto Gonzales
Hearings on Chertoff Confirmed as Attorney
On February 7, the Senate Homeland Security and General
Governmental Affairs Committee voted to confirm On February 3, the Alberto Gonzales was confirmed
Michael Chertoff, President Bush’s nominee to head the as the new attorney general, despite considerable
Department of Homeland Security (DHS). opposition from Senate Democrats. Just six
Chertoff is currently serving as a federal appeals court Democrats crossed the aisle to join Republicans in the
judge, but previously served as chief of the Department 60-36 vote in support of the Gonzales nomination.
of Justice Criminal Division. In this role, he helped The vote reflected the deep split between Republicans
develop the USA Patriot Act, which enhanced the and Democrats over the administration's counter-
government’s surveillance and detention powers. terrorism policies and whether those policies led to the
The committee’s confirmation hearing was dominated by abuse of prisoners in Iraq and elsewhere.
questions about Judge Chertoff's actions during his Gonzales, who will be the United States’ first Hispanic
tenure at the Department of Justice and his views on attorney general, previously served as White House
interrogation and detention of terrorist suspects. counsel. Prior to that, Gonzales was a judge on the
Chertoff told Senators that he believed homeland Texas Supreme Court; Secretary of state for the state
security grants to state and local governments should be of Texas; and General Counsel for George Bush while
based on threats and vulnerabilities, rather than he was Governor of Texas.
standardized population-based formulas for distributing On January 26, the Senate Judiciary Committee
money. “My philosophy is a risk-based, vulnerability- narrowly approved the nomination, on a strict party-line
based formula is better,” Chertoff said. vote with all eight Democrats on the committee voting
This issue has pitted lawmakers from high-profile against confirmation.
metropolitan areas, whose communities stand to gain At first, many Democrats had joined Republicans in
from a change in the formula, against those from more praising Gonzales’ nomination. However, some
rural regions that could lose out. Democrats withdrew their support after the initial
In addition, Chertoff said that he supports the color- confirmation hearing expressing concern over what
coded alert system used to warn the public about the they termed Gonzales evasive answers about the
threat of terrorist attacks. He defended the alert system, Administration’s policies on the treatment of foreign
saying it helped the public understand exactly why prisoners.
certain security measures were being taken in their Gonzales, as head of the Justice Department, will be
communities. the lead player in the move to extend several key
While a Senate vote is expected shortly, Senator Carl provisions of the USA Patriot Act that are set to expire
Levin (D-MI) is considering a procedural move to delay at the end of the year. The Administration has
the vote until he gets more information about Chertoff’s announced that reauthorization of the Patriot Act is
role in discussing terrorist interrogation techniques while one of the Administration’s top legislative priorities for
he was at the Justice Department. this Congress.

The IACP Capitol Report is prepared by Jennifer Boyter and Gene Voegtlin. If you have any questions, please contact
the legislative staff at 1-800-THE-IACP. If you would like to have the IACP Capitol Report emailed to you as soon as it
published, send an email to join-capreport@iacplist.org.

Legislative Update 4