Rep. Grimm’s National Blue Alert Act Passes House
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Michael G. Grimm’s (R,C-NY) legislation, the National Blue Alert Act (H.R. 365) passed the House. This bipartisan bill, introduced with Rep. Pedro Pierluisi (D-PR) would encourage and integrate a “Blue Alert” system throughout the United States in order to quickly disseminate information when a law enforcement officer is seriously injured or killed in the line of duty. This is Congressman Grimm’s fifth bill to pass the House. It passed with a vote of 394-1.
“As a former FBI special agent, it is a privilege to have the House pass this important legislation, especially during Police Week,” said Rep. Grimm. “I am extremely grateful for the brave men and women of the NYPD who serve our great city under Commissioner Ray Kelly, and for all our nation’s law enforcement officers and agents. It is for this reason that I proudly introduced the National Blue Alert Act, which will allow us to act quickly in apprehending suspects and make it clear to anyone who chooses to harm our nation’s law enforcement officers that they will be caught. Our law enforcement agents are the true heroes of our communities, and I applaud my colleagues for passing this important bill and urge the Senate to quickly do the same.”
The Blue Alert system would work in a similar fashion to the “Amber Alert” system currently used to locate abducted children. It would be implemented by law enforcement agencies, and state and local governments to speed up the apprehension of criminals who seriously injure or kill local, state, or federal law enforcement officers.
H.R. 365 creates the national Blue Alert Program within the Department of Justice. Each year Congress authorizes funds under the COPS Technology Program, for technology and automated systems that help state and local law enforcement agencies prevent, respond to, and investigate crime. This bill authorizes $10 million of already budgeted funds from the COPS Program to be appropriated for the creation of Blue Alert systems throughout the country. It also directs the Department of Justice to designate a national coordinator for the program who will encourage states to develop Blue Alert plans, establish voluntary guidelines, and develop protocols for suspect apprehension.
Watch the Video of Rep. Grimm’s House floor speech.