Category Archives: Funding

Federal funding necessary for clearing rape kit backlog

Congress has the opportunity to renew important funding for helping solve a critical issue in the U.S. — the number of untested rape kits languishing on shelves of police departments, hospitals and state crime labs.

Senators Dianne Feinstein and John Cornyn Announce Debbie Smith Act Reauthorization Bill to Fight Nationwide Rape Kit Backlog Passes Committee

May 7, 2019 – Washington – Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas) released the following statements after the Debbie Smith Act of 2019 passed out of the Senate Dianne FeinsteinJudiciary Committee:

Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grants Program – Formula

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP), National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is seeking applications for formula funding under the FY 2019 Paul Coverdell
Forensic Science Improvement Grants Program. This program furthers the Department’s mission by providing States with tools needed to meet the challenges of crime and justice.
Specifically, this program seeks to improve forensic science and medical examiner/coroner services, including services provided by laboratories operated by States and units of local
government.
Applications Due: June 4, 2019

New Solicitation: FY 2019 DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction (CEBR) Program (Formula)

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP), National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is seeking applications for the FY 2019 DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction (CEBR) program. This program furthers the Department’s mission by funding States and units of local government with existing crime laboratories that conduct DNA analysis to increase the capacity of publicly funded forensic DNA and DNA database laboratories to process more DNA samples, thereby helping to reduce the number of forensic DNA and DNA database samples awaiting analysis and/or prevent a backlog of forensic and database DNA samples.
Applications Due: May 13, 2019

New Solicitation: Postconviction Testing of DNA Evidence, Fiscal Year 2019

With this solicitation, NIJ seeks proposals for funding to assist in defraying the costs associated with postconviction DNA testing in cases of violent felony offenses (as defined by State law) in which actual innocence might be demonstrated.
Funds may be used to identify and review such postconviction cases, and to locate and analyze associated biological evidence.
All applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on May 6, 2019.
Applicants must register with Grants.gov prior to submitting an application.

Using DNA tests to reunite migrant families on the border raises privacy concerns

SAN FRANCISCO — Genetics testing companies are offering to help reunite families separated at the border, but it’s unclear how they would get DNA kits into the hands of migrants and the testing itself could carry hefty privacy risks for migrant families.

Update to Several Open NIJ Solicitations – NIJ Funding Update

NIJ has updated several solicitations (listed below) with instructions for submitting environmental documentation, commonly known as the “NEPA checklist,” with your grant application, if the checklist is required.
NIJ is making this checklist and associated instructions available to you in an effort to streamline the application process and to avoid post-award withholding conditions, related to NEPA, where possible.
Please carefully review the instructions and submit the completed and signed checklist, if appropriate, with your grant application.

New Solicitation: Forensic DNA Laboratory Efficiency Improvement and Capacity Enhancement Program

The EI&CE program awards funding to eligible entities, through a competitive application process with three program objectives:
Enhancing the capacity and increasing the efficiency of crime laboratories to process, record, screen, and analyze DNA and other forensic evidence
Decreasing the turnaround time to process and analyze DNA evidence.
Ensuring continued support for enhancing the quality of DNA analysis results.
All applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on May 7, 2018.

Review Solicitation Here!

New Solicitation: DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction Program (Formula)

NIJ is seeking applications for the FY 2018 DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction (CEBR) program.
This program furthers the Department’s mission by funding States and units of local government with existing crime laboratories that conduct DNA analysis to process, record, screen, and analyze forensic DNA and/or DNA database samples, and to increase the capacity of public forensic DNA and DNA database laboratories to process more DNA samples, thereby helping to reduce the number of forensic DNA and DNA database samples awaiting analysis.
All applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on May 7, 2018.

Review Solicitation Here!

Cornyn, Poe Introduce Bill To Reauthorize The Debbie Smith Act, Provide Resources To Fight Rape Kit Backlogs

U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) and Representative Ted Poe (TX-02) today introduced the Debbie Smith Crime Victims Protection Act, legislation to reauthorize the Debbie Smith Act and dedicate much-needed resources to state and local law enforcement agencies to conduct forensic analyses of crime scenes, including untested rape kits. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Dean Heller (R-NV), and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) cosponsored the bill.

New Solicitation: Postconviction Testing of DNA Evidence

NIJ seeks proposals for funding to assist in defraying the costs associated with postconviction DNA testing in cases of violent felony offenses (as defined by State law) in which actual innocence might be demonstrated. Funds may be used to identify and review such postconviction cases and to locate and analyze associated biological evidence.
All applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on April 26, 2018.
Review the Solicitation.

New Solicitations: Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grants Program

The Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grants Program awards grants to States and units of local government to help improve the quality and timeliness of forensic science and medical examiner/coroner’s office services. Funds under this program may be used to eliminate a backlog in the analysis of forensic evidence and to train and employ forensic laboratory personnel and mediocolegal death investigators, as needed, to eliminate such a backlog.

NIJ seeks proposals for formula (“base”) funding as well as proposals for competitive funding under the program.

Under the program, State Administering Agencies (SAAs) may apply for both formula and competitive funds. Any State/local government entity performing forensic science services is considered a “forensic science laboratory.”

ll applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on April 30, 2018.

Applicants must register with Grants.gov prior to submitting an application.

Santa Clara County Supes Pass Sexual Assault Kit Analysis Recommendation

SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors Tuesday unanimously passed a recommendation from Supervisor Cindy Chavez requiring the District Attorney’s Office to bring back current information on financing needed for the county’s untested sexual assault kits.

Department Of Justice Awards Nearly $37 Million To Support Sexual Assault Kit Testing, Tracking And Investigation

WASHINGTON – The Department of Justice today announced awards totaling nearly $37 million to help state, local and tribal government agencies improve the response to sexual assault and victim services, and analyze unsubmitted sexual assault kits in law enforcement custody. The grants will aid jurisdictions in reducing backlogs of sexual assault evidence and solving crimes of sexual violence.
Administered through the National Sexual Assault Kit Initiative, managed by the Office of Justice Programs’ Bureau of Justice Assistance, 21 grant awards totaling more than $35 million were awarded to improve the processing of sexual assault kits and strengthen jurisdictions’ capacity to act on evidence resulting from kit processing. Those awards are available online at: https://www.bja.gov/funding/FY-2017-National-Sexual-Assault-Kit-Initiative-Funding-Awards.pdf

New money means more GBI scientists to test rape kits for DNA

For years, thousands of rape kits sat in storage at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation untouched and untested as the agency’s crime lab found itself short-staffed and unable to keep pace.
But an influx of more than $850,000 in new funding from the state to add more scientists and lab technicians has officials hopeful the agency will eventually eliminate the rape kit backlog.