The Justice Department on Monday designated New York, Portland and Seattle “anarchist jurisdictions,” setting up a move to revoke federal funding.
DOJ said the cities “have permitted violence and destruction of property to persist and have refused to undertake reasonable measures to counteract criminal activities.”
Earlier this month, President Trump ordered federal agencies to examine ways to cut federal funding in cities that have allowed violent riots to repeatedly occur. Trump’s order gave the director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 30 days to issue guidance to federal agencies on restricting eligibility for federal grants for the cities on the DOJ list.
New York City gets more than $7 billion from such grants in fiscal 2021 alone, about 7.5% of the city’s projected total revenue.
The DOJ cited New York City’s rising gun violence, cuts to the NYPD’s budget, and moves by various district attorneys not to prosecute charges related to protests earlier this summer.
“We cannot allow federal tax dollars to be wasted when the safety of the citizenry hangs in the balance. It is my hope that the cities identified by the Department of Justice today will reverse course and become serious about performing the basic function of government and start protecting their own citizens,” Attorney General William Barr said in a statement.
“When state and local leaders impede their own law enforcement officers and agencies from doing their jobs, it endangers innocent citizens who deserve to be protected, including those who are trying to peacefully assemble and protest,” Barr said.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, earlier this month threatened to sue the Trump administration if federal funds were cut.
“I believe the president is fundamentally a bully, which I’ve said too many times, and I’ve known him very well for a very long period of time. It doesn’t work in New York because you can’t bully New Yorkers,” the governor said at the time. We just don’t get bullied. We don’t respond well to it, and I want to talk about facts.”