Today, U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci (OH-16) voted in favor of H.R. 4970, the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, or VAWA. Rep. Renacci co-sponsored the legislation, which provides full funding for VAWA and passed in the House with bipartisan support.
"As a husband and a father I believe it is of the utmost importance that we reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act," said Rep. Renacci. "Our bill provides $660 million in annual funding to help prevent domestic violence and protect victims of abuse. It also increases resources for sexual assault investigations, prosecutions and victim services. We must give law enforcement the tools to prosecute these crimes, and victims the resources they need to get help."
Highlights of H.R. 4970
Funds VAWA at the same level as the Senate passed bill.
Increases resources for sexual assault investigations, prosecutions and victims services to bring those resources in line with the victimization rate.
Strengthens penalties for sexual assault and abuse -- includes a mandatory 10 year sentence for forcible rape.
Promotes educational awareness to prevent violence and improve services for young victims.
Funds state rape prevention education programs.
Enhances campus/dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking prevention programs.
Requires that 75 percent of funding under the DNA Analysis Backlog Elimination Act of 2000 is dedicated to testing rape kits to reduce the backlog (currently 40 percent).
Increases maximum penalties under federal stalking laws by five years for vulnerable victims or violating a protection order.
Rep. Renacci is serving his first term in the U.S. House of Representatives, where he is a member of the Financial Services Committee. Prior to his election he worked as a Certified Public Accountant in the health care industry, and owned and operated over 60 other businesses in the automotive and sports management fields.