OLR Bill Analysis

HB 6375

AN ACT CONCERNING UNIFORM CRIME REPORTS.

SUMMARY:

This bill authorizes the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) to deny eligibility for state and federal law enforcement grants to any municipality whose police department fails to comply with the state's uniform crime reporting system's (UCR) reporting requirements (see BACKGROUND).

By law, under the state's UCR program, police departments must submit to the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) commissioner, at such times as he prescribes, reports on the number and nature of crimes committed within their jurisdictions and other such information as he requires. DESPP sends the data to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which compiles and publishes states' data annually in its Crime in the United States series. Under the bill, if a department does not submit the required report or submits a report with missing, incomplete, or incorrect information, the commissioner must notify OPM's Criminal Justice Policy and Planning Division and the municipality's chief elected official, and OPM may deny the town eligibility for state or federal law enforcement grants. Information is considered missing, incomplete, or incorrect, under the bill, if so designated by the FBI or if not submitted within 60 days of the end of the month in which it must be reported.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2013

BACKGROUND

UCR Program

Under the UCR program, law enforcement agencies from across the country voluntarily provide data on crime within their jurisdictions to the FBI, either through a state UCR program, as is the case in Connecticut, or directly to the FBI's UCR program in states without a UCR program. Under Connecticut's UCR program, police departments submit crime data to DESPP, which must publish annual reports on the extent, fluctuation, and nature of crime in Connecticut. Nationally, the states' UCR data is used in law enforcement administration, operation, and management, and to indicate fluctuations in crime levels in America.

Examples of State and Federal Law Enforcement Grants

Justice Assistance Grant (JAG). This program provides states and local governments with funding necessary to support law enforcement and other programs. The program requires that 40% of total grant awards be set aside for local grant projects.

Stop Violence Against Women. This program encourages the development and improvement of effective law enforcement and prosecution strategies to address violent crimes against women and the development and improvement of advocacy and services in cases involving violent crimes against women.

Police and Youth Program. The goals of this program are to promote positive youth development and increase the number of police officers who are experienced and comfortable interacting with youth.

COMMITTEE ACTION

Public Safety and Security Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

24

Nay

0

(02/28/2013)