Hoeven: FY19 CJS Funding Bill Advances Hoeven’s SURVIVE Act to Provide Resources for Tribal Crime Victims

Senate Appropriations Committee Approves Legislation Providing Strong Support for Law Enforcement, Community Safety Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator John Hoeven today announced that he has secured up to $220 million in funding in the Fiscal Year 2019 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies (CJS) Appropriations Act for tribal crime victims. The legislation sets aside 5% from the Crime Victims Fund (CVF) for tribes to provide services to victims of violence, which is in line with Hoeven’s Securing Urgent Resources Vital to Indian Victim Empowerment (SURVIVE) Act. Hoeven also worked to ensure that the funding bill provides strong support for law enforcement and community safety programs across the nation. 

“This legislation provides important tools to bolster local law enforcement efforts and improve public safety. At the same time, it provides resources to better assist survivors in their recovery,” said Hoeven. “That includes strong funding, in line with our SURVIVE Act, to provide tribal communities with greater access to resources under the Crime Victims Fund.”      

Hoeven’s SURVIVE Act/ Tribal Funding 

The FY19 CJS Funding bill advances Hoeven’s efforts as chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs to improve public safety for tribal communities. As part of his efforts, Hoeven introduced the SURVIVE Act, which provides a 5% set aside from the CVF to tribal communities. Under the current system, it is estimated that no more than 0.7% of the CVF reaches Indian tribes. The CVF, which is financed by fines and penalties paid by convicted federal offenders, provides up to $4.4 billion available to victims annually. 

Additionally, the Appropriations Committee approved the FY 2019 Interior Funding bill that includes funding to construct new Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) tribal detention facilities. In FY 2018, Hoeven worked to secure funding for new detention centers and ensured that the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Tribe’s project to replace its current detention was listed as a top priority. 

Support for Law Enforcement

  • Byrne Memorial Justice Grants: Provides increased funding for Byrne Justice Assistance Grants, which provide states, tribes, and local governments with critical funding to support programs including law enforcement, prosecution and courts, crime prevention and education. 
  • Regional Information Sharing Systems (RISS) – Provides increased funding to support the six regional centers and the RISS Tech Support Center, which provide secure communications and information sharing services to combat multi-jurisdictional crime. Law enforcement in North Dakota have stressed the importance of fully funding this program, and Senator Hoeven led a bipartisan letter to the appropriations committee asking that it include full funding for RISS.
  • Second Chance Act: Provides strong funding to support federal, state and local efforts to reduce prison costs and improve public safety by preventing repeat offenses and violent crime.
  • Drug Court Program – Increases funding for the Drug Court system, which diverts non-violent drug offenders from prison by requiring treatment and random drug screenings while under close supervision, resulting in significant cost savings for judicial and corrections systems.
  • Veteran Treatment Court Program – Provides an opportunity for treatment to former military members who suffer from serious mental health and substance abuse issues when such issues result in contact with the criminal justice system.

The legislation was approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee this week and now goes to the full Senate for consideration.