The controversial Edward Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) to the Greensboro Police Department (GPD) is once again on the agenda for the Wednesday, Nov. 17 Greensboro City Council meeting.
For years the JAG funding, which is a grant from the US Department of Justice to local law enforcement agencies, appeared on the agenda for City Council meetings and was passed without comment. The JAG funding requires no local match and is distributed across the country based on a formula devised by the Justice Department.
The only option the City Council has is to either accept the federal funding to assist the GPD or reject the funding.
All previous City Councils viewed this as a “no brainer” and accepted the federal funding from the Justice Department with little or no comment.
However, in January 2020, the majority on the Greensboro City Council chose to buckle under to demands made by a representative of the Working class & Homeless Organizing Alliance (WHOA) based on inaccurate information and ignore the facts presented by Greensboro Assistant City Manager Trey Davis.
The result was that Mayor Nancy Vaughan and Councilmembers Tammi Thurm, Sharon Hightower, Michelle Kennedy, Yvonne Johnson voted to reject the federal funding. Councilmembers Justin Outling, Marikay Abuzuaiter and Nancy Hoffmann voted against rejecting the grant. Councilmember Goldie Wells was absent from the meeting and Kennedy has since resigned her seat on the City Council.
Because the City Council voted to reject the JAG funding in 2020, the $138,000 that the GPD would have received was split between the High Point Police Department and the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department.
Since that vote in 2020, the majority on the City Council has reversed its position and voted to accept the JAG funding.
However, at a recent City Council meeting, the JAG funding became an issue again when Hightower complained about how the JAG money had been spent. Police Chief Brian James explained that the money had not been spent because it had not been received and the City Council vote Hightower referenced was to apply for the grant, not to receive the grant.
Police Chief Brian James explained that the money had not been spent because it had not been received and the City Council vote Hightower referenced was to apply for the grant, not to receive the grant.
Thank you for your patience Chief James. Not all City Representatives are capable of seeing the facts beyond their bias.
Lets us see how Hightower has spent the $600,000 plus money she has gotten ? Probably in the same bag as the money for the museum on S.Elm. Why is it that these monies never have to be accounted for? Just Asking
It’s election time. I bet Tammi Thurm votes to accept the money this time.
And I bet she votes for take home cars. Isn’t it funny how an upcoming election causes that?
Tony Wilkins for Greensboro City Council
You are correct. But do not worry she still will not get the police officer vote.
Hightower is perpetually NOT paying attention, but folks keep on electing her anyway – go figure!
“However, at a recent City Council meeting, the JAG funding became an issue again when Hightower complained about how the JAG money had been spent. Police Chief Brian James explained that the money had not been spent because it had not been received and the City Council vote Hightower referenced was to apply for the grant, not to receive the grant.”
Once again, Hightower doesn’t know a thing about serving the citizens of Greensboro, only her own constituents. It is time people in her district vote her out of offce.
Hightower is doing exactly what she is supposed to do. Vote for the interests of her constituents, not her own individual interests, in her District. That is what elected representatives are supposed to do.
By turning down free money. You would think she would be concerned about the level of crime in her district.
Vote to defund the police why the murder rate keeps increasing in her district, is that the right thing to do?
You do not “just” represent the interests of those who elected you, but are sworn to support the interests for all City residents.
Joe you are so out of touch with today’s politicians
OMG! Surely Council will stand up to Hightower and accept these funds. Is it any wonder that our City’s crime rate keeps climbing! The criminals have Council and especially the Mayor in their pocket. We need nine new Council member! Most especially a new Mayor. Stand for Greensboro, not just the idiots and criminals. Hightower, get a brain.