Sunday, February 12, 2006

SF columnist says Byrne grant cuts an indicator of Congress' budget cutting will

Speaking of the Byrne grant program, an item today criticizing the program from San Francisco Chronicle columnist Deb Saunders titled "Your tax dollars on drugs" was terrific.

Some news I didn't know: "The White House Office of Management and Budget studied the Byrne grants and gave the program a 13 percent rating for results and accountability. That's an F-," she wrote.

Citing the Tulia scandal and quoting several conservative critics, Saunders adroitly summed up what all this means in political terms: "If the president can't push Congress to kill a program that is 13 percent effective, then he can't cut anything, because there is no will to spend responsibly in Washington."

No kidding.


Anonymous said...

For now, I only see the other funding programs like HIDTA, OCDETF, DEA Task Forces, as Bynre Grants with a different names. They are easily accessible, have absolutely no accountabilty, they're numbers driven, they're federally (unlimited) funded, and they LACK the same inspection and oversight as Byrne Grants.

There's too much money to fund enforcement when you add federal funding and unregulated asset forfeiture. Tax payers are picking up the cost of the overfunded results. It's an upside down pyramid that won't change until the money is allocated with a mindset different than just enforcement.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Leah, I don't offhand know about such research for prisoners, though there's a lot out there about the mentally ill and when institutionalization is appropriate. Sorry I'm not more help.

And to anonymous - you've convinced me on the HIDTA and other brands of task forces. I'm glad to some of those funds proposed for the cutting block, too. Best,

Anonymous said...

Some drug task forces in Texas tried to change their colors, and become homeland security/terrorism task forces after 9/11. Fortunately, they only siphoned off more money from drug enforcement waste and abuse into a failed attempt at continuing to bilk federal dollars from the pork barrel. Anonymous 1 is right, they will just change the names on the federal check. Interesting how this issued played on partisan lines:
republicans killed drug enforcement funding and democrats screamed how we needed these task forces.