October 24, 2022
Albany, NY

Governor Hochul Announces $28 Million to Combat Gun Violence, Increase Opportunity for Youth and Strengthen Public Safety in Seven Cities Across New York State

Governor Hochul Announces $28 Million to Combat Gun Violence, Increase Opportunity for Youth and Strengthen Public Safety in Seven Cities Across New York State

Albany, Buffalo, Mount Vernon, Newburgh, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers Will Each Receive Up to $4 Million through Project RISE: Respond, Invest, Sustain and Empower

Funding Will Help Community-Based Organizations Identify Needs, Gaps in Services and Develop Plans to Expand Programming for Youth and Families and Improve Public Safety

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the availability of $28 million to assist seven cities - Albany, Buffalo, Mount Vernon, Newburgh, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers - combat gun violence across the state. This funding is being made available through Project RISE - Respond, Invest, Sustain and Empower - to provide community-based organizations in each city up to $2 million to implement, expand and improve programs and services that increase opportunity for youth and families, empower neighborhoods disproportionately affected by gun violence and improve public safety. Additionally, $2 million in capital funding is being made available in each city to support these violence prevention services and safer neighborhoods.

"The scourge of gun violence requires bold investments on multiple fronts, and by investing in local organizations through Project RISE we will help meet each neighborhood's needs, address local challenges, and provide effective, sustainable solutions," Governor Hochul said. "This funding and these partnerships will improve, enhance and expand the State's comprehensive response to gun violence in each of these cities, helping address the root causes of gun violence and create safer neighborhoods for all New Yorkers."

"The Governor and I are coming at this increase in gun violence from all angles, doubling down on public safety. In addition to engaging law enforcement, strengthening gun laws and running gun buyback programs, we are also empowering communities through outreach efforts," said Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado. "The new Project RISE will allow local governments and community organizations to direct the funding to where it is needed most."

Lieutenant Governor Delgado joined elected, community, and law enforcement leaders at the Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon this morning to outline the state's significant investment in Project RISE, part of the administration's multifaceted plan to address the increase in shootings and firearm-related homicides since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Developed and administered by the state Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS), Project RISE allows local stakeholders in each city to develop a comprehensive plan for funding that addresses the unique needs of their neighborhoods. While gun violence in these seven communities and 13 others that participate in the state's Gun Involved Violence Elimination (GIVE) initiative declined in the first eight months of this year when compared to 2021, it has not decreased to pre-pandemic levels.

New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services Commissioner Rossana Rosado said, "I have traveled across the state, meeting with stakeholders in each of these communities, to better understand the struggles and hurdles individuals and organizations face as we work together to reduce gun violence. Project RISE will help by funding and supporting existing, active, smaller community organizations that are in the trenches every day, providing support and services that get to the root cause of gun violence. I thank Governor Hochul and Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado for their steadfast support of community groups and individuals working to establish and maintain peace."

Commissioner Rosado and staff from the DCJS Office of Youth Justice hosted community listening sessions and stakeholder workshops in the seven cities this summer to learn from residents and representatives of community-based organizations, schools, local government and law enforcement, among others, about current programming, gaps to services, barriers to access, and the challenges they face when trying to address the long-term impact of violence.

Following those meetings, Office of Youth Justice staff worked with local residents and stakeholders to establish a Project RISE Steering Committee, members of which are responsible for fostering ongoing collaboration, identifying programs and services for funding, and implementing their city's plan to meet the program's goals:

  • Build a local community's capacity to implement and sustain programming to address the underlying factors contributing to violence in the community; and
  • Enhance responses to violence within the community through increased community partnerships and programming with a healing and equity lens.

Each city's Steering Committee will identify up to four community organizations eligible to receive awards of up to $500,000 ($2 million total) and receive technical assistance from Office of Youth Justice staff to develop a plan detailing how the funding will be distributed. Project RISE funding in each city may be used to support mentoring, mental health services, restorative practices, community trust building, employment and education support, and youth development activities, among other programs and services that address trauma resulting from long-term exposure to violence, build resilience and strengthen youth, families and neighborhoods. Each community also can access up to $2 million in capital funding to support the programs it chooses to implement.

DCJS used a data-driven approach to identify the seven initial Project RISE communities, analyzing demographics and poverty data for each city as outlined in the American Community Survey; and violent crime and shooting data reported to the state by each city's police department.

State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said, "We have taken decisive action to confront violence by passing nation leading, smart gun safety laws, but we must continue investing in the communities we represent to better our partnerships. I'm glad we were able to secure this $28 million statewide investment through project RISE to continue building on the work we've started to strengthen the partnerships between law enforcement and communities that have been disproportionately harmed by the justice system. I'd like to thank Governor Kathy Hochul and Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado for investing in our communities to keep New Yorkers safe."

State Senator Jamaal Bailey said, "As a father and a legislator, there can be nothing more urgent than keeping our children and our communities safe from the scourge of gun violence. The epidemic of gun violence requires an all hands-on-deck, community-led response and we must use every tool in our power to meet the needs of this moment. Project RISE represents a critical step forward to empower and uplift the communities hardest hit by gun violence. The programming and services that this funding supports will be transformative for the city of Mount Vernon and communities throughout the state. I want to thank Governor Kathy Hochul and Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado for this investment in the future of our children and the dedicated individuals and organizations working in our communities to save lives."

State Senator James Skoufis said, "I applaud this initiative from the Governor and am grateful that this new funding is being directed to the cities most in need of support, including Newburgh. As we've seen over the course of many years, eliminating gun violence doesn't just take a village -- it requires a commitment from stakeholders at every single level. I'll continue to work with our local, county, and state partners to keep our communities safe."

Assemblymember Jonathan Jacobson said, "Unfortunately, there is too much gun violence in Newburgh which I represent so I am glad to see the Governor's commitment to fighting gun violence in a three-prong approach which I have long advocated and supported. First, stop the illegal gun trafficking and the flow of illegal guns from outside the State along the iron pipeline of I-95 and elsewhere. Second, get guns out of the hands of those who are likely to cause harm to themselves and others through the expansion and enforcement of the Red Flag Law. Third, invest in our young people so they have after-school activities to keep them off the streets as well as a career path to good paying jobs. Project RISE addresses the third leg of this comprehensive approach to gun violence. I applaud Governor Hochul for going beyond the everyday rhetoric with a substantive approach to fighting gun violence."

Westchester County Executive George Latimer said, "Combatting violence in our communities takes a cooperative approach with all levels of government - and more importantly - community stakeholders. Project RISE is a result of that cooperative approach. I thank the Governor, Lieutenant Governor and all of our partners for their work on this important public safety issue."

Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, "Being a leader means listening to our communities and acting, and I commend Governor Hochul for doing just that every day - especially when it comes to combatting gun violence. New York State's proven gun violence prevention programs have helped reduce shootings by more than 30% in 2021, and we will continue to work side-by-side with our local, state, and federal partners to enhance public safety and take illegal - and often out-of-state - guns off our streets. Thank you to Governor Hochul for demonstrating once again that she will utilize every resource available to support our communities and keep our residents safe."

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said, "The City of Syracuse Mayor's Office to Reduce Gun Violence has been in operation for just six months and is already creating new levels of cooperation and partnership in our community. The Office is also developing a comprehensive strategy based on data and engagement with stakeholders to finally turn back gun violence in Syracuse. There is no question the pandemic has exacerbated the root causes that contribute to gun violence. I am grateful to Governor Hochul for providing this new funding through Project RISE, so that the City and our community partners can increase resources to programs that are working effectively and introduce new interventions that help youth and families and improve public safety in Syracuse."

Rochester Mayor Malik Evans said, "My team and I are working diligently every day to improve public safety and reduce violent crime and this welcome assistance will go a long way to improving the quality of life for Rochesterians. We see every day the toll that gun violence is taking on our city, so we are very thankful for Governor Hochul's investment in Rochester and cities across the state."

Mount Vernon Mayor Shawyn Patterson-Howard said, "The proliferation of guns flooding our communities, coupled with pandemic era rises in mental health, have resulted with increases in gun related violence, and trauma in our communities across the country. This crucial funding provides our smaller nonprofits the ability to build out their administrative capacity and allow them to work with us on driving down crime. We are thankful to Governor Hochul and Lt. Governor Delgado that communities impacted the most by these issues are on the frontline of funding to help fight back against crime."

Newburgh Mayor Torrance Harvey said, "I owe a large debt of gratitude to Governor Kathy Hochul as the Mayor for the city of Newburgh!! This Project RISE grant for seven cities which includes Newburgh NY is yet another example of how keen our Governor is on listening to the voices of the people who cry out for real solutions to gun violence & mental health issues and a myriad of social/economic issues being faced on the ground in real time. This effort is going to provide direct action for the people of our great city & state!!!"

Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown said, "Project RISE is an innovative program that will provide trusted community organizations with the necessary resources to help reduce senseless gun violence. By focusing on expanding opportunities for our youth we will be able to enhance public safety and build a stronger future for our communities. I thank Governor Hochul for her leadership and her continued partnership in our efforts to reduce gun violence in our community."

Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said, “We have seen too many young lives cut short by gun violence in cities across the nation including Yonkers. Today’s announcement is a positive step in our mission to develop and implement a comprehensive plan to reduce and stop gun-related crimes. I want to thank Governor Kathy Hochul, Lt. Governor Antonio Delgado and the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services for their continued partnership and investment in our city.

Governor Hochul secured $227 million in the state's FY 2023 Budget to fund Project RISE and other initiatives administered by DCJS to strengthen gun violence prevention efforts of both law enforcement and community-based organizations. These initiatives include:

  • $20.9 million for SNUG and community-based gun violence initiatives to support additional SNUG programs; increase programming to help meet the basic needs of vulnerable young people; provide skills-based job-readiness and work-placement training; and launch a program to recruit and retain outreach workers; and approximately $4 million in federal funding through the Office of Victim Services to embed social work services within SNUG programs;
  • $18.2 million for law enforcement agencies that participate in New York State's Gun Involved Violence Elimination initiative, the largest State investment in the program, to deploy evidence-based strategies to reduce shootings and save lives in the 20 communities in 17 counties hardest hit by gun violence; and
  • $15 million for New York's ten Crime Analysis Centers, which collect and share criminal intelligence - including crime gun data - among more than 350 state and local law enforcement agencies, serving as a critical resource to deter, investigate, and solve crimes, including firearm-involved violent crimes.
  • $20 million in law enforcement technology grants, including license plate readers, mobile and fixed surveillance cameras, unmanned aerial vehicles, gunshot detection devices, smart equipment for patrol vehicles and officers, and other kinds of public safety equipment.

The budget also includes an additional $10 million to support body-worn cameras, as well $20 million inpretrial services fundingto all counties outside of New York City to support a continuum of pretrial services, including screening and assessments, supervision, a centralized case management system, and dedicated information sharing with the court system.

The Division of Criminal Justice Services is a multi-function criminal justice support agency and has a variety of responsibilities, including law enforcement training; collection and analysis of statewide crime data; maintenance of criminal history information and fingerprint files; administrative oversight of the state's DNA databank, in partnership with the New York State Police; funding and oversight of probation and community correction programs; administration of federal and state criminal justice funds; support of criminal justice-related agencies across the state; and administration of the state's Sex Offender Registry. Follow the agency on Twitter and Facebook.

Contact the Governor's Press Office

Contact us by phone:

Albany: (518) 474-8418
New York City: (212) 681-4640


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