Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2011, $430,991)
The Juvenile Accountability Block Grant Program (JABG) Program is authorized under the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 2002 (42 U.S.C. 3796ee). The goal of the JABG program is to reduce juvenile offending through accountability-based programs focused on both the juvenile offender and the juvenile justice system. The objective is to ensure that States and Territories are addressing the specified purpose areas and receiving information on best practices from OJJDP. JABG funds are allocated to States and Territories based on each State's relative population of youth under the age of 18. The underlying premise of juvenile accountability programming is that young people who violate the law should be held accountable for their actions through the swift, consistent application of graduated sanctions that are proportionate to the offenses, both as a matter of basic justice and as a way to combat juvenile delinquency and improve the quality of life in the nation's communities.
Iowa's JABG Plan includes a request for a waiver of the 75% pass-through, based on the state's financial burden for juvenile justice, which is demonstrated to be 79% for the administration of juvenile justice. One unit of local government in Iowa qualifies for a direct allocation. The state plan for the remaining amount has been developed with input from the chief juvenile court officers, the Department of Human Services, Iowa League of Cities, and the Iowa State Association of Counties, the Juvenile Justice Advisory Council (SAC), and the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Planning Advisory Council. Iowa's plan includes four separate projects:
- Allocation to communities through local juvenile court services offices;
- Disproportionate Minority Contact Resource Center and detention reform;
- Research and design protocols and processes to provide additional mental health services for youth in the juvenile justice system, and
- Assist juvenile courts in data collection and data analysis on juvenile offenders and their families.
The state plan promotes accountability through offender-focused sanctions specific to the needs of local communities, and through system-focused sanctions specific to the needs of local communities, and through system focused activities that address best practices in juvenile justice.