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O’Fallon Justice Center improvements use federal Asset Forfeiture funds

At the Oct. 8 City Council meeting, Resolution 10-08-2020E was passed unanimously.  Mid Rivers Newsmagazine previously published an article regarding the resolution, including details about how Asset Forfeiture funds were to be used for improvements in the Justice Center.

After the decisions, O’Fallon resident Timothy Dolan inquired about the legality of those planned improvements using Asset Forfeiture funds.  While the legality of the usage would have been questionable if the funds were from local sources and were under Missouri law, the funds are from a federal grant, and as a result, can be used as originally planned in Resolution 10-08-2020E.

What was not mentioned in the original Oct. 8 council meeting materials for the resolution was that the Asset Forfeiture funds actually came from federal Asset Forfeitures that were passed to the city in a grant. 

As such, those funds must be used under U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) guidelines, as outlined in their April 2009 “Guide to Equitable Sharing for State and Local Law Enforcement Agencies.” 

All of the Justice Center improvements are permitted under those guidelines.

The city has reported the Justice Center improvement to the DOJ and to the Missouri Attorney General as required.

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