Byrne & JAG Grants

Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant

The Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program (42 U.S.C. § 3751(a)) is the primary provider of federal criminal justice funding to state and local jurisdictions. The JAG Program provides states and units of local governments with critical funding necessary to support a range of program areas including law enforcement, prosecution and court programs, prevention and education programs, corrections and community corrections, drug treatment and enforcement, crime victim and witness initiatives, and planning, evaluation, and technology improvement programs. The JAG Program replaces the former Byrne Formula and Local Law Enforcement Block Grant (LLEBG) programs with a single mechanism to provide this funding.

The initial allocation to each state is divided with 60% to state government and 40% for direct awards to municipalities (pass-through) that qualify for a direct award of $10,000 or more as determined with a formula that takes population and serious crime into consideration. If a portion of the pass-through is not awarded the unused funds are returned to the state to supplement the 60% portion.

Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Administrators

Contact for State Agencies

Michael Hogan

(401) 764-5794


Contact for Police Departments

Gail Pereira

(401) 764-5796


Program Specific Information

JAG funds may be used for state and local initiatives, technical assistance, strategic planning, research and evaluation (including forensics), data collection, training, personnel, equipment, forensic laboratories, supplies, contractual support, and criminal justice information systems that will improve or enhance such areas as:

  • Law enforcement programs
  • Prosecution and court programs, including indigent defense
  • Prevention and education programs
  • Corrections and community corrections programs
  • Drug treatment and enforcement programs
  • Planning, evaluation, and technology improvement programs
  • Crime victim and witness programs (other than compensation)

In each state and territory, the Governor or other Chief Executive Officer designates an agency (the State Administering Agency) to apply for and administer these funds. The SAA will be responsible for:

  • Preparing and submitting the state JAG application.
  • JAG requires that states pass through a predetermined percentage (variable pass-through) of funds to units of local government, such as a city, county, township, or town. Calculated by BJS, this percentage is established by assessing the total criminal justice expenditures by the state and units of local government. In Rhode Island the pass-through rate is currently 47.9%. and is subject to annual changes.
  • In addition to the predetermined pass-through percentage, states must also distribute or pass-through funds from the "less than $10,000 jurisdictions" which have been added to the state's award. These less-than $10,000 funds must be awarded by the state to state police departments that provide criminal justice services to units of local government and units of local government/or whose allocation is less than $10,000.