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FY2015 DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction Program - Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences

Award Information

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

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2016, $1,075,272)

The State of Alabama - and ADFS specifically - continues to face serious budgetary constraints, already having experienced a 43% reduction in State level funding for forensic services over the last eight (8) years. ADFS is also beginning to see the reality of increased database sample submissions arising from the implementation of an 'all felony arrestee' DNA testing statute, which was first implemented in 2010, and recently expanded on January 30, 2016. The Federal funding from this award will greatly offset these serious shortfalls, and will be used to realize the following goals:
1. Reduce the forensic DNA casework backlog through analyst overtime and the purchase of Biology supplies to assist ADFS process, record, screen and analyze forensic DNA samples.
2. Reduce the DNA database sample backlog through analyst overtime and the purchase of database supplies to assist ADFS process, record, and analyze DNA database samples.
3. Increase the capacity of the Forensic DNA and DNA Databank laboratories through the purchase of:
- One (1) QiaSymphony Robotic DNA extraction platform to greatly increase the capacity and efficiency of DNA casework within the Huntsville Regional DNA Laboratory; Seven (7) Thermal Cyclers for the PCR amplification of DNA casework and database samples. Each thermal cycler will be assigned to the Huntsville and DNA Databank Laboratories to increase the overall laboratory capacity of the DNA Section to perform DNA casework and Databank analyses; One (1) microcentrifuge and one (1) minicentrifuge to increase the laboratory capacity of DNA extractions performed within the Hoover and Huntsville Regional DNA Laboratories, respectively; The ADFS expects to test at least 850 cases by the end of the Award period, resulting in a significant reduction in the statewide backlog of cases awaiting testing. The ADFS DNA Databank laboratory also expects to process at least 7,700 DNA database samples (which includes 700 QC samples) using Federal funding. The statewide turnaround time on Biology casework is expected to be reduced by an additional 15 days, with the analyst throughput in the casework sections expected to increase a minimum of 7%.

Date Created: September 7, 2016