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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release September 13, 2000


Six years ago today, I signed the historic 1994 Crime Bill into law with a vision of bringing communities and local law enforcement together to take back our streets and win the war against crime. Since enactment of this vital law, crime has dropped every year to its lowest level in over 25 years, and America is the safest it has been in a generation. One of the most important factors in our success is the Community Oriented Policing Service (COPS) program, which has funded over 105,000 police officers for our streets. Today Attorney General Janet Reno will release a report to Congress on the positive impact the COPS program has had on communities of all sizes and regions across America. By building partnerships and trust with residents, COPS officers are not only helping reduce crime, but the fear of crime as well, restoring hope and promise for the future in neighborhoods across America.

The Attorney General will also announce over $55 million in community policing grants to more than 700 communities to hire or redeploy of over 1,600 police officers, to develop 311 non-emergency hotline programs, and to install cameras in over 2,900 law enforcement vehicles to improve officer safety and promote officer integrity. Although the COPS program continues to make progress by giving communities the tools they need to fight crime, we must do more. I urge Congress to make the 21st Century the safest yet by reauthorizing the COPS program for another five years, and fully funding my $1.3 billion budget request to help put up to an additional 50,000 officers on the street and provide law enforcement and communities with more resources than ever to keep American families safe. Together, we can make America the safest big country in the world.