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FY 2009 Recovery Act Byrne Competitive Grant Program

Award Information

Award #
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $2,692,181)

The Recovery Act Edward Byrne Memorial Competitive Grant Program (Byrne Competitive Program) will help communities improve the capacity of state and local justice systems and provide for national support efforts including training and technical assistance programs strategically targeted to address local needs. This competitive grant announcement focuses on initiatives in eight areas: 1) preventing and reducing violent crime through community-based data-driven approaches; 2) providing funding for neighborhood-based probation and parole officers; 3) reducing mortgage fraud and crime related to vacant properties; 4) hiring of civilian support personnel in law enforcement (training staff, analysts, dispatchers, etc.); 5) enhancing forensic and crime scene investigations; 6) improving resources and services for victims of crime; 7) supporting problem-solving courts; and 8) national training and technical assistance partnerships.

Under Category 2, the Yolo County, through the probation department, will use the grant award to introduce an evidence-based pretrial risk assessment process for community release of in-custody defendants to address the threatened closing of one of two detention centers coupled with overcrowding and prohibitively high custodial detention costs. The static risk assessment developed by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services (VDCJS) will be used to formulate recommendations to the Court for Own Recognizance (OR) release with associated conditions. Two probation officers will be placed in the jail facility to thoroughly screen up to 1,500 arriving defendants in the first year, identifying those at 'lower risk' that likely can be safely released to the community pending trial. Six additional officers will be assigned to community-based defendant monitoring in teams of two to ensure compliance with court orders. Some defendants will be issued electronic monitoring devices. A supervising probation officer will oversee the project. Officers will be trained in motivational interviewing, also an evidence-based practice, as a strategy for eliciting behavioral change among defendants. These staff will be recently laid off probation,
corrections, and law enforcement officers from county agencies.


Date Created: September 7, 2009