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Governor Hochul of New York State Unveils Significant Investments in Crime Prevention and Public Safety in the FY25 Enacted Budget

Enhances penalties for assaulting retail workers and earmarks $40.2 million for retail theft enforcement. Broadens the range of offenses eligible for prosecution as hate crimes. Allocates $389 million in targeted investments to communities to combat gun violence. Invests $40 million to bolster support for survivors of domestic violence and enhance prosecution efforts. Allocates $7.1 million to reduce recidivism and enhance supervision of parolees.

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced major investments to fight crime and keep New Yorkers safe that were included in the FY25 Enacted Budget. This includes funding to crack down on organized retail theft, combat the rising tide of hate crimes, make targeted investments in communities to prevent gun violence and domestic violence, and reduce recidivism and improve reentry for formerly incarcerated individuals across New York State.
“Public safety is my top priority and I won’t ret rest until everyone is safe and feels safe in the State of New York,” Governor Hochul said. “We’ve heard the calls of retail workers and business owners, parents and religious leaders, and this Budget sends a clear message: we hear you, and we will do everything in our power to keep you safe.”

Cracking Down on Organized Retail Theft

The FY25 State Budget includes Governor Hochul’s five-point plan to fight organized retail theft:

  • Bolstering criminal penalties for anyone who assaults a retail worker by elevating it from a misdemeanor to felony. Any person who causes physical injury to a retail worker performing their job will be subject to this new felony.
  • Allowing prosecutors to combine the value of stolen goods when they file larceny charges. The Budget allows retail goods from different stores to be aggregated for the purposes of reaching a higher larceny threshold when stolen under the same criminal scheme.
  • Making it illegal to foster the sale of stolen goods to go after third-party sellers. A person will be found guilty if they use any website or physical location to offer stolen goods for sale.
  • $40.2 million for dedicated Retail Theft Teams within State Police, District Attorneys’ offices and local law enforcement, including 100 New York State Police personnel dedicated to fighting organized retail theft.
  • $5 million tax credit to help small businesses invest in added security measures such as cameras. To help alleviate the burden on small businesses for additional security measures, the Budget creates a $3,000 tax credit, available to any business with 50 or fewer employees that spends the threshold amount of money on retail theft prevention measures.

Combating Hate Crimes

The FY 2025 Budget builds on Governor Hochul’s steadfast commitment to ending the rising tide of hate in New York State. After witnessing shocking increases in hate crimes and connecting with affected communities, Governor Hochul committed to expanding the list of eligible offenses. The Budget adds 28 hate-crime eligible offenses and includes $35 million for the Securing Communities Against Hate Grant to protect houses of worship, religious schools and other at-risk sites.

Targeted Investments in Communities to Prevent Gun Violence and Domestic Violence

Tackling the issue of gun violence requires extraordinary investments in community-based solutions, and the FY 2025 Budget continues the historic investment of $347 million to reduce and prevent gun violence. Since last year’s unprecedented funding level, shooting incidents have declined by 38 percent in New York City and 35 percent in Gun Involved Violence Elimination (GIVE) jurisdictions. This investment will continue to allow communities, law enforcement and nonprofit groups to stem gun violence in New York State.

Governor Hochul is committed to giving law enforcement and District Attorneys the tools they need to prevent and prosecute crimes of domestic violence. The FY 2025 Budget includes a total of $40.8 million to reduce domestic violence and support victims of domestic violence. This includes $35.8 million in funding for DAs to create and expand dedicated domestic violence units and implement evidence-driven, survivor-centered, and trauma informed interventions. This is a best practice that supports collection of evidence and relationship building with a victim before an arrest is made. The FY 2025 Budget also includes $5 million in continued investment for victims of domestic violence to cover expenses in emergency situations.

Reducing Recidivism and Improve Supervision of Parolees

Building on reforms like the Clean Slate Act signed by Governor Hochul in November 2023, the FY 2025 Budget allocates $7.1 million to reduce recidivism and improve reentry into the workforce. Funding will be used to provide more intensive supervision of individuals on parole, expand transitional housing opportunities, scale up college programming to all state correctional facilities, and provide transportation for visitors to and from state correctional facilities.

New York State Governor’s Press Office Albany New York

Source: https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/ – Midtown Tribune news
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