Portland, Maine: United States Attorney Halsey B. Frank announced that the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) has awarded $3,266,879 to the State of Maine, $47,070 to the City of Westbrook, $45,597 to the City of South Portland, and $36,405 to the City of Saco to address the public safety challenges posed by the outbreak of COVID-19.
OJP awarded the grants as part of $850 million available under the Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program, authorized by the stimulus legislation President Trump signed in March. This program allows eligible state, local and tribal governments to apply immediately for these critical funds. Since the program was launched in early April, OJP has awarded more than $566 million to state, local and tribal agencies and organizations. A list of all awards can be found here.
“Maine jurisdictions continue to receive needed funds to address the public safety challenges posted by this pandemic,” said U.S. Attorney Frank. “I am pleased that the Department of Justice has been able to provide the state and local jurisdictions with resources they need to keep their personnel safe while they perform their crucial mission in this unprecedented time.”
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security, or CARES, Act gives jurisdictions considerable latitude in the use of funds for dealing with COVID-19. Potential uses include hiring personnel, paying overtime, purchasing protective equipment and distributing resources to hard-hit areas. Funds may also be used to help correctional facilities cover costs related to COVID-19, including, but not limited to, sanitation, contagion prevention and measures designed to address the related medical needs of inmates, detainees and correctional personnel.
Jurisdictions that have not yet applied for funds may do so until May 29, 2020. OJP will fund successful applicants on a rolling basis as it receives applications. Grantees may apply the funds retroactively to January 20, 2020, subject to federal rules.
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. A complete list of eligible jurisdictions and their allocations is available at https://bja.ojp.gov/program/fy20-cesf-allocations. For more information, please visit https://bja.ojp.gov/funding/opportunities/bja-2020-18553.
OJP, 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 is located at www.ojp.gov.