More than $1 million in state and federal money will help fund criminal justice-related programs in Berks County, Pa. Rep. Thomas Caltagirone, the Democratic chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, announced Wednesday.
The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, of which Caltagirone serves as a board member, will administer the funding through several programs, including those for victims' services, drug and alcohol treatment programs and rehabilitation programs for inmates.
"This funding will speak volumes in terms of benefits to Berks County," Caltagirone said. "By definition these are grants, but in reality they are targeted investments."
Berks County will receive a $852,572 grant and a $62,379 grant to enhance victims' services programs throughout the county, specifically relating to victims of crimes committed against them by a juvenile.
The county will also receive two grants of $165,000 and $269,403 for the county's intermediate punishment program, said Caltagirone, noting that the program funds certain projects relating to eligible non-violent offenders, including house arrest, electronic monitoring and work release.
The funding also will be used to support Berks County's drug and alcohol treatment-based programs for qualifying offenders.
"Each and every dime is a component of the criminal justice system," Caltagirone said. "The ultimate goal is to improve the quality of life in every neighborhood, reduce the financial burden of the current system and provide help to those who need it most."
In addition, a $196,141 grant was awarded to the Berks Counseling Center to expand the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14.
The SFP 10-14 Program is an evidence-based program that offers a family-based intervention to assist parents with child management skills, help decrease potential risk factors for future substance abuse and enhance overall family communication.