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house Bill H.R. 3249

Should $50 Million in Annual Grants Help States & Cities to Combat Gangs?

Argument in favor

This bipartisan bill will provide resources local gang task forces they need to counteract and prevent gang violence and activity in their communities.

Mark 's Opinion
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06/06/2018
Is that including “White Supremacy Christian Gangs”?...the NRA???...ICE???
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06/04/2018
Unfortunately, gangs prey on the lower income kids with nothing to do and no one to guide them. Both parents have to work to provide even subsistence income and are unavailable for support. Doesn't matter what color you are, poverty doesn't discriminate. Parts of society have decided that these kids are not worth their time and effort, so the kids are on their own.
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Ctom628's Opinion
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06/05/2018
Having a way to monitor the progress should be part of the payout.
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Argument opposed

This bill is well-intended, but it doesn’t do enough to ensure that the anti-gang task forces getting grants don’t enforce racially biased policies.

David's Opinion
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06/05/2018
As a former police officer, $50M is a pithy amount, especially when community outreach and other measures suggested in this bill are the recommended courses of action ... like putting a used bandaid on a sucking chest wound. Use the funds to address the socioeconomic issues, not the symptom.
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Josh's Opinion
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06/06/2018
All I see this money being used for is more military gear for law enforcement. We could use that money to fix the problems that start gangs in the first place. Fix the socioeconomic problems and the rest will follow.
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Ryan's Opinion
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06/06/2018
This is a ridiculous waste of tax payer funds. Gun control should be the first and foremost issue in regards to public safety. Well, it looks like Ed Royce voted in favor of the bill. He literally represent everything I hate about living in Orange County, CA. Growing up in this area has given me a unique insight into affluent white people and the way they think. In short if it keeps minorities down and out of their communities they are all for that action.
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What is House Bill H.R. 3249?

This bill would authorize the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Block Grant Program to provide $50 million in annual grants over the 2018-2020 period that’d aim to help federal, state, and local agencies for combat gang crime and developing prevention initiatives, like community outreach. Of the total funding, 30 percent would go to regional task forces in areas with a significant or increased presence of gangs and localities. Localities receiving grants would be given the greatest practical flexibility to focus funds on problems they’ve identified. The PSN program — which has previously been authorized under other grant programs — would become a standalone grant program.

Impact

Law enforcement agencies that’d receive grants under the PSN program; the communities they serve; and the Dept. of Justice.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 3249

$130.00 Million
The CBO estimates that enacting this bill would cost $130 million over the 2018-2020 period.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA) introduced this bill to curb the rise in gang activity and violence by authorizing the Project Safe Neighborhoods grant program to give local law enforcement agencies grants to combat gangs:

“I have seen firsthand the good work that gang task forces can do to remove the gang threats in our community. They are an important tool in crime prevention, and this legislation will make sure they have the tools they need to take on violent gangs like MS-13. The Project Safe Neighborhoods Grant Program Authorization Act will help steer federal funding toward frontline regional gang task forces like the Northern Virginia Regional Gang Task Force. The community policing involved with the Regional Gang Task Force includes officers who speak Spanish, understand gang culture, and are familiar with these communities. ICE officials complement these efforts by removing the dangerous members, allowing the Task Force to work in our highest risk schools on gang prevention and education.”

House Democrats expressed reservations about this bill despite supporting its authorization, writing in its committee report:

“We support preventing and fighting crime no matter who the perpetrator may be, but we must be careful to avoid targeting groups of young people who are not engaged in crime, and also avoid using law enforcement as a means to target anyone because of their ethnicity or national origin. Too often, the rhetoric of fighting gangs has been laced with racial bias. We cannot ignore that unfortunate reality of current times. Therefore, we must be vigilant in conducting oversight of Program funds and in protecting against such possible abuse.”

This legislation passed the House Judiciary Committee and the House as a whole on voice votes before being amended and passed by a voice vote in the Senate. It has the support of two cosponsors, both of whom are Republicans.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: Chris Yarzab via Flickr / Creative Commons)

AKA

Project Safe Neighborhoods Grant Program Authorization Act of 2018

Official Title

To authorize the Project Safe Neighborhoods Grant Program, and for other purposes.

bill Progress


  • EnactedJune 18th, 2018
    The President signed this bill into law
  • The senate Passed May 16th, 2018
    Passed by Voice Vote
      senate Committees
      Committee on the Judiciary
  • The house Passed June 7th, 2018
    Roll Call Vote 394 Yea / 13 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on the Judiciary
      Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security
    IntroducedJuly 14th, 2017

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    Is that including “White Supremacy Christian Gangs”?...the NRA???...ICE???
    Like (70)
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    As a former police officer, $50M is a pithy amount, especially when community outreach and other measures suggested in this bill are the recommended courses of action ... like putting a used bandaid on a sucking chest wound. Use the funds to address the socioeconomic issues, not the symptom.
    Like (124)
    Follow
    Share
    All I see this money being used for is more military gear for law enforcement. We could use that money to fix the problems that start gangs in the first place. Fix the socioeconomic problems and the rest will follow.
    Like (94)
    Follow
    Share
    This is a ridiculous waste of tax payer funds. Gun control should be the first and foremost issue in regards to public safety. Well, it looks like Ed Royce voted in favor of the bill. He literally represent everything I hate about living in Orange County, CA. Growing up in this area has given me a unique insight into affluent white people and the way they think. In short if it keeps minorities down and out of their communities they are all for that action.
    Like (45)
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    Stop the militarization of local police forces.
    Like (35)
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    Stop the militarization of our police. There are better ways to do this. Addressing poverty is at the top of the list!
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    Unfortunately, gangs prey on the lower income kids with nothing to do and no one to guide them. Both parents have to work to provide even subsistence income and are unavailable for support. Doesn't matter what color you are, poverty doesn't discriminate. Parts of society have decided that these kids are not worth their time and effort, so the kids are on their own.
    Like (33)
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    This doesn’t address the cause of formation of gangs. A true plan to combat gangs includes school funding, a return of skills classes to high schools; civics classes; and life skills classes. Gangs are a function of social disconnect, poverty and an inability to critically think. None of this money will create anything better for the gangs or society.
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    No. They will simply waste the money. It’s a local problem. Deal with it locally.
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    Gang crime has a direct correlation to poverty. Maybe we should be attacking the real problem instead of simply giving the police more money to keep racially biased policies in place.
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    I’m not against this bill as much as I am for this bill. What is missing completely is the “Community Element.” The residents in these gang infested communities are left in most cases a militaristic environment with little or no say as what LE is proposing to bring their way. Give some of these block grants to programs that are working to reduce crime in these communities. Maybe offer up some self-defense training alternatives to those who desire. How about providing training for Neighborhood “Protective Service Group?”
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    I know this bill means well, but it doesn't do enough to ensure those funds wouldn't reinforce racially-biased policies. Addressing social factors like education, health, and over-imprisonment would be more helpful to these communities than an increasingly-militarized police force.
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    Instead, money should be taken from the wealthy and big corporate by repealing the tax cuts to them, so that our safety net programs can be funded!
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    Are these grants going to go towards militarizing our police even further? If it is then forget it! Is this bill going to address the huge racial disparities when it comes to how law enforcement polices our neighborhoods? It doesn’t look like it. Also, keep ICE out of this!
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    Having a way to monitor the progress should be part of the payout.
    Like (6)
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    If we put a stop to Trump flying to Florida we could give them 300+ million dollars.
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    Raise the minimum wage. That would help a lot of our problems.
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    This proposal does not address root cause. The root cause of a lot of societal issues is oppression. Oppression derived from Conservatism policies. Remove Conservatism, and societies will thrive. Conservatism Kills!! Just look at the Conservatism solution. Provide more money for more guns to classify more undesirables as gangs and thugs so the Conservatives can Kill off the so-called “undesirables “.
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    No, because this current administration has threatened that sanctuary cities would be denied federal grants. Why offer a federal grant when it could be withdrawn at a moments notice, especially if someone happens to offend or anger trump. Also, $50 million dollars annually spread out across the entire nation amounts to a pittance being offered to such programs.
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    “H.R. 4249 -SAFE NEIGHBORHOODS” I’m in strong support of H.R. 3249 - PROJECT SAFE NEIGHBORHOODS GRANT PROGRAM AUTHORIZATION ACT OF 2017 bill which will authorize the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Block Grant Program to provide $50 million in annual grants over the 2018-2020 period that’d aim to help federal, state, and local agencies for combat gang crime and developing prevention initiatives, like community outreach. * Of the total funding, 30 percent would go to regional task forces in areas with a significant or increased presence of gangs and localities. * Localities receiving grants would be given the greatest practical flexibility to focus funds on problems they’ve identified. The PSN program — which has previously been authorized under other grant programs — would become a standalone grant program. * The only stipulation I’d have is that restrictions be written into the bill stating that the funds be direct to counter gang activities and not diverted to other NON-GANG activities or projects. This bipartisan bill will provide resources local gang task forces they need to counteract and prevent gang violence and activity in their communities. 6*5*18
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