Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - Recently, The U.S. Government awarded more than $4.4 billion to support state, local, and tribal public safety (law enforcement) and community justice activities.

Montana will receive just under $20 million of those funds.

KGVO News spoke to U.S. Attorney for the State of Montana, Jesse Laslovich about those grants coming to Montana.

$20 Million of $4.4 Billion Coming to Montana Law Enforcement

“This is part of the department's approach to be proactive when combating crime,” began Laslovich. “We are inherently reactive when people commit crimes are investigated. They're referred to our office for prosecution for violations of federal law and we seek to hold them accountable. There's a big part of the Department of Justice that people don't realize in the United States where we try to be proactive, and so in Montana, yes, big news, almost $20 million being awarded to 35 recipients, the main recipient being our Montana Department of Justice.”

Laslovich said many departments in Montana had applied to receive those funds.

Many Agencies have Applied for those Federal Funds

“These aren't just random organizations that are receiving the money but rather, folks who have applied,” he said. “Those grants are administered through the Board of Crime Control, and the money is tracked. There's a record of folks truly trying to help at risk youth, for example. A lot of time our focus is so much on people committing the crime, but we always are thinking about the victim as well, and so having those local community organizations that support victims have some of this money will further help in our efforts.”

Laslovich said there’s a major effort to get these funds directly to local law enforcement agencies.

“We're actually getting money into the hands of local police departments and sheriff's offices,” he said. “We have a juvenile justice issue in our state and nation, so we’re trying to get money there to make that effort more effective. Most importantly for me is getting the money out of Washington D.C. It's money being distributed throughout the country and here in Montana, and of course, $20 million is nothing to blink at.”

Laslovich said the Investigation Continues on the Blackfeet Reservation

Laslovich referenced a story about the investigation into human remains found on the Blackfeet reservation.

“The case that you mentioned with the body that was found on the Blackfeet reservation; the FBI did the statement about a case that they had been investigating for the last few weeks. We now have further information based on that body being found and there is more to come on possible prosecution depending on how that investigation is completed.”

Laslovich said there are more than 3,700 Department of Justice grants coming to help Montana law enforcement agencies.

LOOK: Where people in Montana are moving to most

Stacker compiled a list of states where people from Montana are moving to the most using data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

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