The Oversight Committee is currently holding a hearing, “Examining Grantmaking Practices at the Department of Justice.” The hearing will examine how the Justice Department's Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) awarded grants in fiscal year 2007.
Investigators Look for Favoritism in Justice Department Grants
Carrie Johnson, Washington Post – June 19, 2008
Lawmakers and Justice Department auditors are examining millions of dollars in crime-fighting grants awarded by the agency last year in an effort to determine whether personal ties may have influenced the process, according to sources familiar with the inquiries.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has interviewed current and former employees in the Justice Department’s grant-making units about whether officials disregarded independent reviews and steered awards to favored groups, the sources said.
The Justice Department’s inspector general, meanwhile, is looking into allegations of an improper hire, according to people who have been contacted because of the probe.
Confusion over the grants and the process under which they were distributed have been the subject of complaints within the Justice Department and the law enforcement community. Justice Department staff members who oversee money targeted for children and juvenile offenders first sounded alarms earlier this year about what they called a haphazard approach that disadvantaged worthy applicants in favor of a program that promoted golf for inner-city teenagers.