Last week the Senate Appropriations Committee eliminated funding for the Second Chance Act in the fiscal year (FY) 2012 Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations bill. In contrast, the House Appropriations Committee provided $70 million in their FY12 funding bill. The Second Chance program was originally funded at $100 million in FY 2010, but that was reduced to $83 million in 2011.
Members of Congress need to hear from you immediately about the importance of Second Chance Act funding.
Share this information and ask your colleagues and friends to help protect funding for the Second Chance Act.
Although no funding for Second Chance was included in the bill, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy pledged to work to restore funding when the House and Senate Appropriations Committees attempt to resolve differences between the two spending bills.
The bill also provides $9 million for the Mentally Ill Offender Act (the legislation that authorizes the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program) for FY12.
Overall it provides $2.3 billion for state and local law enforcement programs, including:
$9 million for the Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act
$0 million for the Second Chance Act
$395 million for Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants
$21 million for Byrne Competitive Grants
$35 million for Drug Courts
$10 million for Residential Substance Abuse Treatment
Committee approval is only the first step in the appropriations process. The appropriations bills must be passed by the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, as well as the full House and Senate.
For the summary of the legislation approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee click here.
For the bill report language, please visit click here.