The Violence Against Women Grant Fund has been renewed for another year in Fort Bend County. Commissioners ratified the grant funds at the Nov. 2 meeting.
In total, Fort Bend County received $182,607 from Gov. Greg Abbott's office, while the county did a cash match of $222,746, according to court agenda documents. The grant comes from the Office on Violence Against Women, which falls under the U.S. Department of Justice.
The grant pays for people who work specifically in the county's domestic violence unit, according to Wesley Wittig, the executive assistant district attorney at the Fort Bend County District Attorney's Office.
“We've actually had that [Violence Against Women] Grant for years and years and years, and it pays for a prosecutor, [and] it pays for a couple of investigators that specifically work in our domestic violence unit,” Wittig said.
This grant took effect Sept. 1 and applies until Aug. 31, 2022. The grant dictates how much money needs to be spent in different departments, Wittig said.
"The state has to allocate a certain percentage to certain areas—25% of the overall federal granting funds to law enforcement, 25% to prosecution, 5% to courts and 30% to victim services," he said. "Now, there is a remaining 15% that is discretionary, as long as it's within the parameters of the Violence Against Women Act."
Correction: This article originally incorrectly stated that formula grants will eventually become completely county funded. The county will be required to continue offering a cash match, but the grant will not be taken over completely by the county.