December 16, 2009

President Signs Spending Bill Containing Millions for New Mexico Crime-Fighting Initiatives

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jeff Bingaman and Tom Udall today announced that a spending bill that contains millions of dollars to fight meth use, tackle border crime, and support the state's drug courts has been signed into law.

"From domestic violence prevention to juvenile justice programs, New Mexico communities will greatly benefit from the funding included on this bill," Bingaman said.

"I am pleased that President Obama has signed a bill to give our law enforcement the tools they need to keep New Mexicans safe by decreasing drug violence, preventing youth crime, and reducing the growing threat of violence along our border," Udall said. "These investments in crime prevention and justice initiatives are critical to the safety of our state, and this bill allows us to continue these efforts."

The bill contains the following for New Mexico:

$5 million - International Law Enforcement Academies (ILEAs) - The bill contains language that directs the State Department to provide $5 million to ILEA in Roswell (ILEA-R). ILEAs were created by the US State Department to train international law enforcement officers in an effort to enhance of the professionalism of foreign law enforcement officials to enable them to efficiently combat crime in their respective countries and at, the same time, prevent the movement of transnational criminal elements into the United States and throughout the world.

$265,000 - Juvenile Assessment and Reporting Center (JARC), Prevention and Intervention Program in Las Cruces: The nonprofit serves as a central point of entry into the juvenile justice system, where it assesses juveniles who have committed a misdemeanor or non-violent felony and makes a referral to a community program designed to address the specific needs of the juvenile and his/her family.

$200,000 - San Juan Youth Advocate Program: The funding will support the work of the Youth Advocate Program in San Juan County, which will expand gang prevention efforts to an additional 75 youth and their families.

$400,000 - Torrance County Sheriff's Department: Funding will be used to help the Torrance County Sheriff's Department fight methamphetamine use.

$275,000 - New Mexico Sheriff and Police Athletic League, Gang Prevention-Intervention Program: Funding will help the N.M. Sheriff and Police Athletic League continue a state-wide Gang Prevention-Intervention Program. The program will identify children and youth who are at-risk for gang recruitment and seek to reduce the attractiveness of gang membership and its lifestyle. The organization will work closely with law enforcement agencies, school systems, and communities to develop strategies to reduce gang activity and promote positive and healthy communities.

$200,000 - New Mexico Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Hispanic Community Outreach: Funding will be used to help the Albuquerque coalition expand its outreach efforts to Hispanics across the state through a comprehensive, multi-media public education campaign to raise awareness and prevent domestic violence. Funding would be used to create and conduct a Spanish-language Hispanic domestic violence public awareness and prevention media campaign.

$300,000 - New Mexico Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), Drug Court Program: Funding will expand court programs throughout the state and standardize drug court databases and performance evaluations. New Mexico's drug courts have increased over the last five years from 20 to 41 programs, and continue to report excellent performance outcomes.

$220,000 - New Mexico Attorney General, Environmental Crimes Unit (ECU) Outreach and Training Program: The ECU investigates and prosecutes environmental crimes throughout the state and requires resources to educate government agencies and the general public about environmental crime. Funding will be used to conduct live trainings of law enforcement and land management personnel, and do public outreach through the media to create awareness of environmental crimes to deter criminal behavior and increase the reporting of suspected criminal environmental activity.

$215,000 - New Mexico Attorney General, Human Trafficking Task Force: Funding will be used to raise awareness about human trafficking and to support efforts of the Task Force, which include the training of law enforcement, a community media campaign to raise awareness of the issue, and the education of health and social service providers in indentifying trafficking victims. In addition, the funding would be used to support victim services.

$250,000 - New Mexico Children, Youth, and Families Department (CYFD), Juvenile Justice Services Pilot Project: CYFD will use the funding to develop and implement national standards for the delivery of juvenile justice services for probationary, paroled and committed youth. Funding will also be used to improve health and behavioral health services, educational services, and to decrease the recidivism rate of youth offenders.

$500,000 - New Mexico Corrections Department (NMCD), Prisoner Reentry Initiative: Funding will be used by NMCD to expand ongoing prisoner reentry initiatives aimed at rehabilitating prisoners and decreasing recidivism rates.

$250,000 to help the Luna County Sheriff's Department: Funding will help the department modernize its public safety communication systems.

$250,000 - City of Las Cruces Juvenile Justice and Law enforcement After School Program: Funding will be used to fund the city's Juvenile Justice and Law enforcement After School Program.

$400,000 - Albuquerque Public Safety Department: Funding will help the department continue to develop a Comprehensive Information system.

$100,000 - Farmington Interoperability Radio Communications: Funding will replace and upgrade the aging police and fire communications equipment to facilitate communications with regional partners in times of emergency.

$200,000 - New Mexico State University Science, Engineering, Mathematics and Aerospace Academy: The Academy will use the funding to continue to engage historically underrepresented youth in activities in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The United States needs 400,000 new graduates in STEM fields by 2015 and only 15 percent of all colleges graduates currently choose them as careers, which impacts American competitiveness.

$300,000 - Eastern New Mexico University Flight Research Training Center: The Flight Research Training Center has developed a program to detect, mitigate and recover from loss of control accidents in aircraft by focusing on advanced maneuver and upset recovery training for pilots using in-flight simulation. Funding will be used to support the development of aviation jobs in southeastern New Mexico and the transition to a robust and economically viable program based in Roswell that will make air travel safer for the public.