Hagatña – Shawn N. Anderson, U.S. Attorney for the Districts of Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands today announced that Guam received $2,932,867.00 in Department of Justice grants to respond to the public safety challenges posed by the outbreak of COVID-19.
The grant, awarded to the Guam Bureau of Statistics and Plans is available under the Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program, authorized by the recent stimulus legislation signed by President Donald J. Trump. Additional funds have been allocated for local jurisdictions on Guam. Those jurisdictions can find out if they are eligible and apply immediately by visiting this website. The Justice Department is moving quickly, awarding grants on a rolling basis and aiming to have funds available for drawdown as soon as possible after receiving applications. Funding is also available for the CNMI upon application and meeting grant requirements.
U.S. Attorney Anderson stated, “This important funding is an additional step in the ongoing efforts by the Department of Justice to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. This particular allocation will support a broad range of activities by the Government of Guam. Other DOJ efforts include my appointing a Coronavirus Fraud Coordinator, who has joined our law enforcement partners in prioritizing criminal investigations related to coronavirus. At the national level, Attorney General William P. Barr created the COVID-19 Hoarding and Price Gouging Task Force to coordinate efforts with the Antitrust Division and U.S. Attorneys across the country where illegal activity is taking place.”
“The outbreak of COVID-19 and the public health emergency it created are sobering reminders that even the most routine duties performed by our nation’s public safety officials carry potentially grave risks,” said Katharine T. Sullivan, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs. “These funds will provide hard-hit communities with critical resources to help mitigate the impact of this crisis and give added protection to the brave professionals charged with keeping citizens safe.”
The law gives jurisdictions considerable latitude in the use of these funds for dealing with COVID-19. Potential uses include hiring personnel, paying overtime, purchasing protective equipment, distributing resources to hard-hit areas and addressing inmates’ medical needs.
Agencies that were eligible for the fiscal year 2019 State and Local Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program are candidates for the emergency funding. Local units of government and tribes will receive direct awards separately according to their jurisdictions’ allocations.
The Office of Justice Programs, directed by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan, provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, assist victims and enhance the rule of law by strengthening the criminal and juvenile justice systems. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.