Attorney General Eric Holder announced today that President Obama's FY 2015 Budget proposal for the Department of Justice calls for $173 million in targeted investments for criminal justice reform efforts.
These investments--such as increased funding for state and local prisoner reentry initiatives--are among the key highlights in the president's overall $27.4 billion budget request for the Justice Department. The FY 2015 request, which represents a $122 million increase over the FY 2014 enacted level, supports a range of federal law enforcement priorities, as well as the criminal justice priorities of state, local and tribal law enforcement partners.
"Each dollar spent on prevention and reentry has the potential to save several dollars in incarceration costs," said Attorney General Eric Holder. "These wise investments can help make our criminal justice system more effective and efficient. Overall, this budget request shows our strong commitment to building upon the record of progress we have established in fulfilling the Justice Department's most critical missions."
In August 2013, the Attorney General introduced the "Smart on Crime" initiative--a package of reforms to the criminal justice system to help ensure that federal laws are enforced more fairly and more efficiently. Among other reforms, the effort promotes diversion courts and other alternatives to incarceration for low-level drug offenders, and urges investment in reentry programs in order to reduce recidivism among formerly incarcerated individuals.