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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR data is current as of February 20, 2020

Title 28Chapter IPart 94Subpart B → Subject Group

Title 28: Judicial Administration
Subpart B—VOCA Victim Assistance Program

Sub-Recipient Allowable/Unallowable Costs

§94.119   Allowable direct service costs.

Direct services for which VOCA funds may be used include, but are not limited to, the following:

(a) Immediate emotional, psychological, and physical health and safety—Services that respond to immediate needs (other than medical care, except as allowed under paragraph (a)(9) of this section) of crime victims, including, but not limited to:

(1) Crisis intervention services;

(2) Accompanying victims to hospitals for medical examinations;

(3) Hotline counseling;

(4) Safety planning;

(5) Emergency food, shelter, clothing, and transportation;

(6) Short-term (up to 45 days) in-home care and supervision services for children and adults who remain in their own homes when the offender/caregiver is removed;

(7) Short-term (up to 45 days) nursing-home, adult foster care, or group-home placement for adults for whom no other safe, short-term residence is available;

(8) Window, door, or lock replacement or repair, and other repairs necessary to ensure a victim's safety;

(9) Costs of the following, on an emergency basis (i.e., when the State's compensation program, the victim's (or in the case of a minor child, the victim's parent's or guardian's) health insurance plan, Medicaid, or other health care funding source, is not reasonably expected to be available quickly enough to meet the emergency needs of a victim (typically within 48 hours of the crime): Non-prescription and prescription medicine, prophylactic or other treatment to prevent HIV/AIDS infection or other infectious disease, durable medical equipment (such as wheel-chairs, crutches, hearing aids, eyeglasses), and other healthcare items are allowed; and

(10) Emergency legal assistance, such as for filing for restraining or protective orders, and obtaining emergency custody orders and visitation rights;

(b) Personal advocacy and emotional support—Personal advocacy and emotional support, including, but not limited to:

(1) Working with a victim to assess the impact of the crime;

(2) Identification of victim's needs;

(3) Case management;

(4) Management of practical problems created by the victimization;

(5) Identification of resources available to the victim;

(6) Provision of information, referrals, advocacy, and follow-up contact for continued services, as needed; and

(7) Traditional, cultural, and/or alternative therapy/healing (e.g., art therapy, yoga);

(c) Mental health counseling and care—Mental health counseling and care, including, but not limited to, out-patient therapy/counseling (including, but not limited to, substance-abuse treatment so long as the treatment is directly related to the victimization) provided by a person who meets professional standards to provide these services in the jurisdiction in which the care is administered;

(d) Peer-support—Peer-support, including, but not limited to, activities that provide opportunities for victims to meet other victims, share experiences, and provide self-help, information, and emotional support;

(e) Facilitation of participation in criminal justice and other public proceedings arising from the crime—The provision of services and payment of costs that help victims participate in the criminal justice system and in other public proceedings arising from the crime (e.g., juvenile justice hearings, civil commitment proceedings), including, but not limited to:—

(1) Advocacy on behalf of a victim;

(2) Accompanying a victim to offices and court;

(3) Transportation, meals, and lodging to allow a victim who is not a witness to participate in a proceeding;

(4) Interpreting for a non-witness victim who is deaf or hard of hearing, or with limited English proficiency;

(5) Providing child care and respite care to enable a victim who is a caregiver to attend activities related to the proceeding;

(6) Notification to victims regarding key proceeding dates (e.g., trial dates, case disposition, incarceration, and parole hearings);

(7) Assistance with Victim Impact Statements;

(8) Assistance in recovering property that was retained as evidence; and

(9) Assistance with restitution advocacy on behalf of crime victims.

(f) Legal assistance—Legal assistance services (including, but not limited to, those provided on an emergency basis), where reasonable and where the need for such services arises as a direct result of the victimization. Such services include, but are not limited to:

(1) Those (other than criminal defense) that help victims assert their rights as victims in a criminal proceeding directly related to the victimization, or otherwise protect their safety, privacy, or other interests as victims in such a proceeding;

(2) Motions to vacate or expunge a conviction, or similar actions, where the jurisdiction permits such a legal action based on a person's being a crime victim; and

(3) Those actions (other than tort actions) that, in the civil context, are reasonably necessary as a direct result of the victimization;

(g) Forensic medical evidence collection examinations—Forensic medical evidence collection examinations for victims to the extent that other funding sources such as State appropriations are insufficient. Forensic medical evidence collection examiners are encouraged to follow relevant guidelines or protocols issued by the State or local jurisdiction. Sub-recipients are encouraged to provide appropriate crisis counseling and/or other types of victim services that are offered to the victim in conjunction with the examination. Sub-recipients are also encouraged to use specially trained examiners such as Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners;

(h) Forensic interviews—Forensic interviews, with the following parameters:

(1) Results of the interview will be used not only for law enforcement and prosecution purposes, but also for identification of needs such as social services, personal advocacy, case management, substance abuse treatment, and mental health services;

(2) Interviews are conducted in the context of a multi-disciplinary investigation and diagnostic team, or in a specialized setting such as a child advocacy center; and

(3) The interviewer is trained to conduct forensic interviews appropriate to the developmental age and abilities of children, or the developmental, cognitive, and physical or communication disabilities presented by adults.

(i) Transportation—Transportation of victims to receive services and to participate in criminal justice proceedings;

(j) Public awareness—Public awareness and education presentations (including, but not limited to, the development of presentation materials, brochures, newspaper notices, and public service announcements) in schools, community centers, and other public forums that are designed to inform crime victims of specific rights and services and provide them with (or refer them to) services and assistance.

(k) Transitional housing—Subject to any restrictions on amount, length of time, and eligible crimes, set by the SAA, transitional housing for victims (generally, those who have a particular need for such housing, and who cannot safely return to their previous housing, due to the circumstances of their victimization), including, but not limited to, travel, rental assistance, security deposits, utilities, and other costs incidental to the relocation to such housing, as well as voluntary support services such as childcare and counseling; and

(l) Relocation—Subject to any restrictions on amount, length of time, and eligible crimes, set by the SAA, relocation of victims (generally, where necessary for the safety and well-being of a victim), including, but not limited to, reasonable moving expenses, security deposits on housing, rental expenses, and utility startup costs.

§94.120   Allowable costs for activities supporting direct services.

Supporting activities for which VOCA funds may be used include, but are not limited to, the following:

(a) Coordination of activities—Coordination activities that facilitate the provision of direct services, include, but are not limited to, State-wide coordination of victim notification systems, crisis response teams, multi-disciplinary teams, coalitions to support and assist victims, and other such programs, and salaries and expenses of such coordinators;

(b) Supervision of direct service providers—Payment of salaries and expenses of supervisory staff in a project, when the SAA determines that such staff are necessary and effectively facilitate the provision of direct services;

(c) Multi-system, interagency, multi-disciplinary response to crime victim needs—Activities that support a coordinated and comprehensive response to crime victims needs by direct service providers, including, but not limited to, payment of salaries and expenses of direct service staff serving on child and adult abuse multi-disciplinary investigation and treatment teams, coordination with federal agencies to provide services to victims of federal crimes and/or participation on Statewide or other task forces, work groups, and committees to develop protocols, interagency, and other working agreements;

(d) Contracts for professional services—Contracting for specialized professional services (e.g., psychological/psychiatric consultation, legal services, interpreters), at a rate not to exceed a reasonable market rate, that are not available within the organization;

(e) Automated systems and technology—Subject to the provisions of the DOJ Grants Financial Guide and government-wide grant rules relating to acquisition, use and disposition of property purchased with federal funds, procuring automated systems and technology that support delivery of direct services to victims (e.g., automated information and referral systems, email systems that allow communications among victim service providers, automated case-tracking and management systems, smartphones, computer equipment, and victim notification systems), including, but not limited to, procurement of personnel, hardware, and other items, as determined by the SAA after considering—

(1) Whether such procurement will enhance direct services;

(2) How any acquisition will be integrated into and/or enhance the program's current system;

(3) The cost of installation;

(4) The cost of training staff to use the automated systems and technology;

(5) The ongoing operational costs, such as maintenance agreements, supplies; and

(6) How additional costs relating to any acquisition will be supported;

(f) Volunteer trainings—Activities in support of training volunteers on how to provide direct services when such services will be provided primarily by volunteers; and

(g) Restorative justice—Activities in support of opportunities for crime victims to meet with perpetrators, including, but not limited to, tribal community-led meetings and peace-keeping activities, if such meetings are requested or voluntarily agreed to by the victim (who may, at any point, withdraw) and have reasonably anticipated beneficial or therapeutic value to crime victims. SAAs that plan to fund this type of service should closely review the criteria for conducting these meetings, and are encouraged to discuss proposals with OVC prior to awarding VOCA funds for this type of activity. At a minimum, the following should be considered:—

(1) The safety and security of the victim;

(2) The cost versus the benefit or therapeutic value to the victim;

(3) The procedures for ensuring that participation of the victim and offenders are voluntary and that the nature of the meeting is clear;

(4) The provision of appropriate support and accompaniment for the victim;

(5) Appropriate debriefing opportunities for the victim after the meeting; and

(6) The credentials of the facilitators.

§94.121   Allowable sub-recipient administrative costs.

Administrative costs for which VOCA funds may be used by sub-recipients include, but are not limited to, the following:

(a) Personnel costs—Personnel costs that are directly related to providing direct services and supporting activities, such as staff and coordinator salaries expenses (including fringe benefits), and a prorated share of liability insurance;

(b) Skills training for staff—Training exclusively for developing the skills of direct service providers, including paid staff and volunteers (both VOCA-funded and not), so that they are better able to offer quality direct services, including, but not limited to, manuals, books, videoconferencing, electronic training resources, and other materials and resources relating to such training.

(c) Training-related travel—Training-related costs such as travel (in-State, regional, and national), meals, lodging, and registration fees for paid direct-service staff (both VOCA-funded and not);

(d) Organizational Expenses—Organizational expenses that are necessary and essential to providing direct services and other allowable victim services, including, but not limited to, the prorated costs of rent; utilities; local travel expenses for service providers; and required minor building adaptations necessary to meet the Department of Justice standards implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act and/or modifications that would improve the program's ability to provide services to victims;

(e) Equipment and furniture—Expenses of procuring furniture and equipment that facilitate the delivery of direct services (e.g., mobile communication devices, telephones, braille and TTY/TDD equipment, computers and printers, beepers, video cameras and recorders for documenting and reviewing interviews with children, two-way mirrors, colposcopes, digital cameras, and equipment and furniture for shelters, work spaces, victim waiting rooms, and children's play areas), except that the VOCA grant may be charged only the prorated share of an item that is not used exclusively for victim-related activities;

(f) Operating costs—Operating costs include but are not limited to—

(1) Supplies;

(2) Equipment use fees;

(3) Property insurance;

(4) Printing, photocopying, and postage;

(5) Courier service;

(6) Brochures that describe available services;

(7) Books and other victim-related materials;

(8) Computer backup files/tapes and storage;

(9) Security systems;

(10) Design and maintenance of Web sites and social media; and

(11) Essential communication services, such as web hosts and mobile device services.

(g) VOCA administrative time—Costs of administrative time spent performing the following:

(1) Completing VOCA-required time and attendance sheets and programmatic documentation, reports, and statistics;

(2) Collecting and maintaining crime victims' records;

(3) Conducting victim satisfaction surveys and needs assessments to improve victim services delivery in the project; and

(4) Funding the prorated share of audit costs.

(h) Leasing or purchasing vehicles—Costs of leasing or purchasing vehicles, as determined by the SAA after considering, at a minimum, if the vehicle is essential to the provision of direct services;

(i) Maintenance, repair, or replacement of essential items—Costs of maintenance, repair, and replacement of items that contribute to maintenance of a healthy or safe environment for crime victims (such as a furnace in a shelter; and routine maintenance, repair costs, and automobile insurance for leased vehicles), as determined by the SAA after considering, at a minimum, if other sources of funding are available; and

(j) Project evaluation—Costs of evaluations of specific projects (in order to determine their effectiveness), within the limits set by SAAs.

§94.122   Expressly unallowable sub-recipient costs.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this subpart, no VOCA funds may be used to fund or support the following:

(a) Lobbying—Lobbying or advocacy activities with respect to legislation or to administrative changes to regulations or administrative policy (cf. 18 U.S.C. 1913), whether conducted directly or indirectly;

(b) Research and studies—Research and studies, except for project evaluation under §94.121(j);

(c) Active investigation and prosecution of criminal activities—The active investigation and prosecution of criminal activity, except for the provision of victim assistance services (e.g., emotional support, advocacy, and legal services) to crime victims, under §94.119, during such investigation and prosecution;

(d) Fundraising—Any activities related to fundraising, except for fee-based, or similar, program income authorized by the SAA under this subpart.

(e) Capital expenses—Capital improvements; property losses and expenses; real estate purchases; mortgage payments; and construction (except as specifically allowed elsewhere in this subpart).

(f) Compensation for victims of crime—Reimbursement of crime victims for expenses incurred as a result of a crime, except as otherwise allowed by other provisions of this subpart;

(g) Medical care—Medical care, except as otherwise allowed by other provisions of this subpart; and

(h) Salaries and expenses of management—Salaries, benefits, fees, furniture, equipment, and other expenses of executive directors, board members, and other administrators (except as specifically allowed elsewhere in this subpart).

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