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Nebraska Crime Commission

Commission on Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice

Divisions

Although the Crime Commission is a relatively small state agency, it is responsible for the administration of a wide variety of programs mandated by state and federal law. The Crime Commission's array of programs and functions reflect its historical transition in mission from that of distributing federal grant funds to a service and regulatory agency, responsible for the overall improvement of Nebraska's criminal and juvenile justice systems.

Budget & Accounting

The Budget and Accounting Division performs core administrative functions for the Crime Commission including:

  • Payroll, including administering benefits and deductions for all employees
  • Payments to Vendors
  • Contractual Payments
  • Payments to Grantees
  • Budget Request submitted to the Governor and Legislature
  • Tracking expenditures by budget program during the fiscal year
  • Federal Financial Reports
  • Respond to requests for information from the State Auditor's staff
  • Revise and interpret internal policies relating to staff
  • Fiscal Notes on Legislative Bills

Community Corrections

Legislative Bill 390 was passed by the legislature and signed into law by the Governor on May 26, 2011. This legislation created the Community Corrections Division of the Nebraska Crime Commission. Previously the duties and staff now associated with this Division were under the Community Corrections Council, which LB390 eliminated.

Community Corrections 2015 Annual Report

Community Corrections 2014 Annual Report

Community-based Juvenile Services Aid

The Community-based Juvenile Services Aid Division is a separate and distinct budgetary program within the Crime Commission, managed by one employee referred to as the Community-based Juvenile Services Aid Division Chief. Funding acquired by communities through participation in this grant program is used to aid in the establishment and provision of community-based services for juveniles who come in contact with the juvenile justice system. Community-based Juvenile Services Aid funds are allocated in accordance with a formula based on the total number of residents per county who are twelve through eighteen years of age. Funds are predetermined amongst Nebraska counties and tribes that meet the statutory eligibility requirements.

Reference Neb. Rev. Stat. §43-2404.01 for comprehensive juvenile services community plan requirements and duties of the Community-based Juvenile Services Aid Division Chief. Reference Nebraska Revised Statute §43-2404.02 for specifics regarding the usage of community-based aid funding.

In accordance with Nebraska Revised Statute 43-2404.02(3)(e) view Section 011 of Title 75, Chapter 1 for the Community-based Juvenile Services Aid Appeals Process.

Community-based Juvenile Services Aid Program Annual Report FY 2014/2015

Grants

Grants Division manages eight different federal and state grant programs. The Grants Division in 2014 awarded 192 grant programs for a total amount of $8,097,043.  The grant programs administered by the Crime Commission include John R. Justice (JRJ), Residential Substance Abuse Treatment (RSAT), Justice Assistance Grant (JAG), Victims of Crime Act (VOCA), STOP Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), Sexual Assault Services Program (SASP), State Juvenile Services, and Office of Juvenile Delinquency and Prevention Title II. 

Information Services

The Information Services Division deals with issues relating to technology and statistics for the Crime Commission. There are three main areas that the Division has responsibility for: internal IT support, research & statistics, and criminal justice integration. The staff provides IT support for the Crime Commission’s day-to-day operations by overseeing office automation, acquisition, support and development of various internal programs. One major application that was developed is GMIS, the Grant Management Information System. This program automates the tracking and oversight of the more than 400 annual grants administered by the Grants Division. Research and statistics have been an ongoing and growing function within the Crime Commission to assist in planning and policy making at the local, state and federal levels. The UCR Section maintains annual crime and arrest statistics as well as doing audits and federal reporting. This provides the basis for state and national assessments of crime and activity. Reporting is done through both UCR (Uniform Crime Reporting) and NIBRS (National Incident Based Reporting System) in conjunction with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The Division participates in other federal initiatives through the Statistical Analysis Center (SAC) program funded by the Federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. Several statewide databases are maintained with statistical information collected, compiled, published and released on a regular and ad hoc basis. Data sharing is essential for the effective administration of justice. The CJIS Advisory Committee is a cooperative project formed by the Crime Commission in 1995 to work on integration and data sharing among criminal justice agencies. The Division provides staff support for the CJIS (Criminal Justice Information System) Advisory Committee and oversees a number of projects. CJIS refers to the broad range of programs and activities undertaken as well as the committee itself. CJIS works on, sponsors and funds projects at state and local levels as well as activities that cross a variety of jurisdictional boundaries. Additionally, CJIS provides a mechanism for agencies to share information about internal projects.

Criminal Justice Information System (CJIS)

The Criminal Justice Information Systems (CJIS) Advisory Committee was established by the Crime Commission in 1995 in response to recommendations from the Nebraska Intergovernmental Data Communications Advisory Council (NIDCAC). The CJIS Advisory Committee provides advice and direction on issues relating to data sharing and use of information technology among criminal justice agencies. The Committee advises the Crime Commission on criminal justice information system issues, establishes and promotes standards for data processing and communication, facilitates the development and coordination of state and local criminal justice information systems, provides an avenue for cooperation and coordination among state and local information systems and establishes future directions for data sharing.

Projects include the web-based data portal Nebraska Criminal Justice Information System (NCJIS) which allows law enforcement and criminal justice agencies secure access to criminal justice information.


Information Technology Support

Information Technology Support is primarily responsible for providing service for the Crime Commission's technology needs. In-house technical computer support is provided for a variety of local applications, systems, and hardware including desktop and server systems. Also the division serves as an advisory for computer technology needs and project development at the Crime Commission.


Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) / Nebraska Incident-based Reporting System (NIBRS)

In 1971, the Crime Commission was assigned the responsibility for the collection of Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Law enforcement agencies in the state are statutorily required to submit monthly Uniform Crime Reports detailing the number of crimes reported or known to them and the number of arrests. The law enforcement agencies required to submit reports include sheriffs’ departments, police departments, the State Patrol, two campus police departments, and the State Fire Marshal. The crime statistics are forwarded to the FBI UCR Program for inclusion in national crime statistics and for use by state and local agencies and policy makers.

Law enforcement agencies may report data in one of two formats to the Crime Commission. The first format is the traditional Uniform Crime Report (UCR) and the second format is the Nebraska Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS). The UCR format collects crime data on eight crimes: murder-manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. Arrest data are collected on 28 categories of crime. NIBRS collects crime data on 22 crime categories and 32 arrest categories. As of 2009, 66 law enforcement agencies submitted data in the NIBRS format. For publication purposes the NIBRS data is converted to UCR.


Statistical Analysis Center (SAC)

The Crime Commission’s Statistical Analysis Center’s (SAC) primary function is to provide accurate and timely research and statistical information to criminal and juvenile justice agencies to aid in planning and decision making. The United States Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics provides federal funding for partial operation of the SAC with the current grant focusing on juvenile justice issues, the Internet and incident-based reporting and analysis. The SAC also serves as a focal point for the exchange of statistical information between federal, state and local criminal and juvenile justice agencies. At the national level, the SAC works cooperatively with several entities such as the Bureau of Justice Statistics, Bureau of Justice Assistance, National Center for Juvenile Justice and Justice Research and Statistics Association as well as criminal and juvenile justice agencies from other states. At the state and local level, the SAC assists agencies in collecting and reporting required statistical information to the Crime Commission. The SAC also provides technical assistance to criminal and juvenile justice agencies in identifying statistical information needs and the appropriate technology to best meet those needs, including the use of commercial computer software and development of computer programs. The SAC and UCR Program annually provide statistical data for Kids Count In Nebraska. This annual source book, published by Voices For Children In Nebraska provides a variety of standard indicators on the status of children in Nebraska. In addition to ad hoc reports and periodic publications, special projects are undertaken by the SAC. To provide information about the public's perception of criminal and juvenile justice issues such as violent crime, youth violence, drug abuse and victimization, statewide surveys have been conducted in conjunction with the University of Nebraska's Department of Sociology - Lincoln Bureau of Sociological Research. The results of the first statewide survey conducted in 1991 were published in Citizen Attitude Survey on Drugs and Drug Control in Nebraska. A second public opinion survey, encompassing 632 households statewide, was conducted in 1994 with the results published in Public Perspectives in Nebraska - A Survey of Community and Criminal Justice Issues. The second survey replicated many of the 1991 survey’s questions in an effort to gauge changes in public opinion about important social issues over time. The survey was expanded and repeated during 1997, focusing on issues and related legislation pending at the time in an effort to assist in planning and decision making. In 1998, updated survey results were provided to the Unicameral and Crime Commission. The SAC works cooperatively with various state and local agencies on joint data concerns make better use of information system technology and meet the changing needs of the criminal and juvenile justice communities. To this end, the SAC’s Director represents the Crime Commission on the Criminal Justice Information Systems (CJIS) Advisory Committee, providing primary staff support for the Committee and serving as the elected chairperson. Additionally, the SAC oversees the internal data processing operations of the Crime Commission and the Nebraska Law Enforcement Training Center, including training and computer programming. The SAC maintains several statewide databases in conjunction with the Crime Commission’s various divisions, including the Jail and Juvenile Detention Admission and Release Database, Juvenile Court Database and Drug and Violent Crime Database.

Jail Standards

The Jail Standards program is established under Chapter 83, Sections 4,124 - 4,134 of the Revised Statutes of Nebraska. An eleven member Jail Standards Board appointed by the Governor is responsible for the promulgation and enforcement of minimum standards for the maintenance, operation, and construction of adult and juvenile criminal detention facilities. The Board has the authority to petition the district court for closure of facilities failing to comply with the Standards. Staff support to the Board is provided by the Jail Standards Division of the Nebraska Crime Commission. The minimum jail standards have been in effect since 1980. The minimum juvenile detention facility standards have been effective since 1993.

The primary responsibility of the Jail Standards Division is the implementation and administration of the Jail Standards and Juvenile Detention Standards program. Major activities related to this function include:

  1. Inspection and Enforcement. Staff conduct annual inspections of each detention facility to monitor compliance with the Standards. Written reports of such inspections are prepared and submitted to the Jail Standards Board for review and official action. Each of the state’s 72 active jail facilities and 4 juvenile detention facilities receive an annual inspection. The Jail Standards Board meets quarterly to review reports and take action.
  2. Technical Assistance. It has been the desire of the Board to provide assistance, where possible, to assist detention facilities in meeting Standards. Technical assistance has been provided in the following areas:
    1. Facility Planning.
    2. Training.
    3. Resource Development.
  3. Data Collection. The Division collects information on the characteristics and flow of inmates through local detention facilities. The “Jail Inmate Records and Statistical System (JIRS)”, the “Jail Admission Management Information Network (JAMIN)” and the “Nebraska Criminal Justice Information System (NCJIS)” provide an on-going database that is critical to both state master planning and planning at the local facility level. For communities planning construction of new detention facilities, this data is essential in determining appropriate size and design characteristics.

The Jail Standards Division attempts to improve conditions and operations in local jails through implementation of Standards to lessen the potential for successful litigation against local officials. Inmate initiated litigation over the last thirty five years of the last century resulted in the evolution of a well-defined body of correctional case law by which jails and detention facilities are bound to abide. With increasing frequency, inmates are successfully challenging jail conditions and practices when they fall short of these clearly established minima. The state, through this program, has accepted the responsibility to monitor and regulate local detention facilities to insure compliance with Standards written to reflect these constitutional requirements. If the Board fails to adequately carry out this responsibility, the state could be held liable as well.

Juvenile Diversion

The Diversion Administrator position was established in 2013 by LB 561, now Neb. Rev. Stat. § 81-1427.  The Diversion Administrator is essentially responsible for fostering, promoting, researching, and assessing juvenile pretrial diversion programs and developing new programs in collaboration with cities and counties across the state of Nebraska.  The administrator coordinates a subcommittee to the Nebraska Coalition for Juvenile Justice, and collaborate with stakeholders across the state to assist in community planning and implementing evidence based juvenile programs as alternatives to detention.

Resources

Nebraska Juvenile Pretrial Diversion Tool Kits

Juvenile Diversion Case Management System

Evidence Based Nebraska Best Practices Briefs

OJJDP Model Programs Guide Literature Reviews

Other Resources

Contact List

Statewide Juvenile Diversion ListServ

The Crime Commission has a statewide juvenile diversion ListServ. To be added to the ListServ, send a request here. To access the ListServ, click here.

Reports

Monitoring of Statewide Juvenile Diversion Programs

The Director of Juvenile Diversion Programs is statutorily tasked with providing “technical assistance and guidance to juvenile pretrial diversion programs for implementing evidence-based strategies or standardized, replicable practices that have been researched and have demonstrated positive outcomes; as well as assist juvenile pretrial diversion program directors, county attorneys district probation officers acting under section 29-2258, and county boards in developing policies and practices that achieve the goals of quality juvenile pretrial diversion programs.” Neb. Rev. Stat. § 81-1427(2)(a) and (f).  One way that this duty is being fulfilled is by conducting on site monitors of juvenile diversion programs statewide.

These juvenile diversion program monitors will give diversion programs statewide the opportunity to receive technical assistance and guidance on the implementation of policies and procedures that follow evidence-based strategies that achieve the goals of a quality diversion program. The program will have the opportunity to discuss how their program is currently functioning, and do a self-evaluation of how their program complies with Nebraska statutory requirements and incorporates best practice recommendations for diversion programs. Programs will have the opportunity to discuss possible gaps or needs in the program, and seek technical assistance on making program improvements.

The ultimate goal for all youth in Nebraska is to have equal access to consistent, quality diversion programs statewide. This process is a first step in the direction of working with diversion programs to implement best practice recommendations and provide quality services for youth in Nebraska!

If you would like to schedule a diversion program monitor, please contact Amy Hoffman.

Monitor Documents

 

Office of Violence Prevention

In the 2009 Legislative session LB 63 was passed establishing the Office of Violence Prevention (OVP). Statutes for OVP can be found at 81-1447 through 81-1451.

Priority of funding will be given to projects that appear to have the greatest benefit to the state and have goals to reduce street and gang violence, homicides and injuries caused by firearms. The Legislature found that to effectively address these issues, communities must develop a multi-faceted approach that includes violence prevention activities, intervention and enforcement, punishment when necessary and rehabilitation. Funding opportunities for these funds can be found under Grant Information on the Crime Commission website.

Mission Statement

To provide Leadership and aid in the development, growth and overall assessment of violence prevention programs throughout the State of Nebraska.

This effort will include, but will not be limited to:

  • Program evaluation
  • Coordination of programs and effort
  • Assist with administration and disitribution of funds to programs
  • Fundraising

Vision Statement

The Office of Violence Prevention strives to aid in the statewide reduction of violent crime. The Statutes for the Violence Prevention funds allow for donated gifts, bequests or other contributions. If you are interested in making a contribution to the Violence Prevention Fund you may do so by making the check out to: Office of Violence Prevention, Funding #27870.

You may send the check addressed to:

Office of Violence Prevention
Attn: Accounting Department
P.O. Box 94946
Lincoln, NE 68509-4946

For more information about the State Office of Violence Prevention, please contact:

Office of Violence Prevention
Chris Harris, Director
P.O. Box 94946
Lincoln, NE 68509-4946
(402)471-3813

Chris.Harris@Nebraska.gov

Training Center (NLETC)

The Nebraska Law Enforcement Training Center, located in Grand Island, provides mandatory Basic Training, Supervision and Management courses, Reserve Officer/In-Lieu-Of Basic Training, continuing education and specialized training for law enforcement and detention officers statewide. Specialized courses include a range of topics such as law enforcement, drug enforcement, domestic violence and sexual assault investigations, highway safety, emergency vehicle operations, fingerprinting, firearms, handling and use of police dogs, defense tactics, violent crime and homicide investigations. Training programs are conducted at the Law Enforcement Training Center as well as on a regional basis throughout the state. Selected training programs are also provided through the Internet.

NLETC Resources