U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Violent Offender Incarceration and Truth-in-Sentencing (VOI/TIS) Incentive Program


The Violent Offender Incarceration and Truth-in-Sentencing (VOI/TIS) Incentive Formula Grant Program provided states with funding to build or expand correctional facilities and jails. From FYs 1996 through 2001, half of the funds were made available for Violent Offender Incarceration Grants, and half were available as incentive awards to states that implement truth-in-sentencing laws.

VOI/TIS grant funds allowed states to build or expand correctional facilities to increase the bed capacity for the confinement of persons convicted of Part 1 violent crimes or adjudicated delinquents for an act that, if committed by an adult, would be a Part 1 violent crime. Funds could also be used to build or expand temporary or permanent correctional facilities, including facilities on military bases, prison barges, and boot camps; to confine convicted nonviolent offenders and criminal aliens; or to free suitable existing prison space for the confinement of persons convicted of Part 1 violent crimes. States also were able to award subgrants of up to 15 percent of their award to local units of government to build or expand jails, and up to 10 percent of a state's VOI/TIS award (1) to the costs of offender drug testing or intervention programs during periods of incarceration and post-incarceration criminal justice supervision and/or (2) to pay the costs of providing the required reports on prison drug use.

BJA issued "Guidance for States on the Use and Disposition Requirements for VOI/TIS-Funded Facilities" that is intended to address the ongoing obligations that recipients of VOI/TIS funds have to DOJ regarding those facilities that were constructed, in whole or in part, with VOI/TIS Grant Program funds.

BJA issued in May 2022 “Guidance on the Duration of the Federal Interest in VOI/TIS-funded Facilities.” As a condition of funding, and in keeping with the statutory purpose of increasing correctional bed space, VOI/TIS grant recipients were required to agree to operate those facilities built under VOI/TIS as correctional facilities or jails. The DOJ has a federal interest in that continued use of the grant-funded facilities. The duration of that interest with respect to any particular facility extends throughout the useful life of the facility (as indicated in the grant recipient’s tax returns and/or annual financial-statement depreciation schedules), or 15 years, whichever is shorter.

Access VOI/TIS Projects by State and Territory.

Date Modified: May 17, 2022
Date Created: March 10, 2012