Grants Funding National Initiatives

See also the State Fines, Fees and Bail Practices Interactive Map for all state-specific grants.

The Audacious Project is an initiative that shows what humanity can accomplish when bold ideas meet visionary, generous supporters. The Audacious Project invites visionary social entrepreneurs and nonprofits to dream big — and helps to shape those dreams into multi-year plans that are both viable and sustainable. The project then invites its coalition of partners — which includes leading nonprofits and individual donors, along with the public — to pool their resources and work together in service of these ambitious ideas. The goal is to amplify the impact of the world’s change-makers and change-funders, and move forward ideas with the potential to impact lives at thrilling scale. The Audacious Project is housed at TED, the nonprofit dedicated to “Ideas Worth Spreading.” It operates with support from The Bridgespan Group, a leading global social impact advisory firm. Additionally, a remarkable group of organizations and individuals have joined with us to make this possible.

Community Foundation of Mendocino County. The Community Foundation of Mendocino County provides grant support in many areas of community life including, but not limited to, education, the arts, community health, alleviation of poverty, youth, and the environment. The Community Foundation’s annual grant process seeks proposals from non-profit organizations that are based in Mendocino County or from any organization with a project that has specific benefit to Mendocino County residents. 

Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program Fiscal Year 2019 State Solicitation. In general, JAG funds awarded to a state under this FY 2019 solicitation may be used to provide additional personnel, equipment, supplies, contractual support, training, technical assistance, and information systems for criminal justice, including for any one or more of the following: Law enforcement programs Prosecution and court programs Prevention and education programs Corrections and community corrections programs Drug treatment and enforcement programs Planning, evaluation, and technology improvement programs Crime victim and witness programs (other than compensation)Mental health programs and related law enforcement and corrections programs Additionally, JAG funds awarded to a state under this FY 2019 solicitation may be used for any purpose indicated in Appendix D.

ESPN: NFL Players Coalition Announces 2 Million in Grants.  The players explained how the funds would help the organizations in furthering their efforts to promote, among other things, bail reform and juvenile justice reform.

Nevada AOC Grant Program. For courts seeking grant funding of up to $50,000, the AOC Grant Program has two funding sources available to Nevada trial courts: The Uniform System of Judicial Records (USJR) Grant funds projects to improve the ability to provide accurate and timely mandatory USJR statistical information to the Nevada Supreme Court, and the Trial Court Improvement (TCI) Grant funds projects addressing court requirements in the areas of technology, security, and court interpreters.

The Russell Sage Foundation has various grants in the area of Computational Social Science (CSS). The Russell Sage Foundation’s initiative on Computational Social Science (CSS) supports innovative social science research that brings new data and methods to bear on questions of interest in its core programs in Behavioral Economics, Future of Work, Race, Ethnicity and Immigration, and Social Inequality. Limited consideration will be given to research that focuses primarily on methodologies, such as causal inference and innovations in data collection. Examples of research (some recently funded by RSF) that are of interest include, but are not restricted to, the following: Small Grants Competitions with Big Data, Linked Administrative Data, Algorithms and Automated Decision-Making, Private Administrative Data, Machine-Learning, Online Surveys and Experiments, Text Analysis, Social Media, Funding Considerations, Program on Behavioral Economics, Program on the Future of Work, Program on Race, Ethnicity and Immigration, and Program on Social Inequality. 

Skillman Foundation Grants. The Skillman Foundation provides grant funding and other supports to organizations whose work advances an Opportunity Agenda for Detroit Children in one of three Impact Areas: Education, Economy, or Equity.


The Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF) is supporting the following national initiatives:

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) - In their LJAF-funded project, the ACLU will use litigation, advocacy and a public campaign to establish national standards 1) to ensure that debtors faced with jail time have access to a lawyer, at no cost if they cannot afford one, 2) for conducting ability-to-pay hearings; and 3) to establish a statutory definition for determining when an individual is indigent.

Brennan Center for Justice and Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) The grant will fund a fiscal impact study of court-imposed legal monetary sanctions. Policy makers will be able to use the analysis to pinpoint when the fiscal costs of debt collection and punishment practices by the court system become larger and costlier than the debts themselves. 

Criminal Justice Program (CJP) of Study at Harvard Law School - With support from LJAF, CJP will build on an existing toolkit by applying the framework and assessing the legal structure for the application of fines and fees in all 50-states.  They will develop a web-based tool to share the results and allow policymakers and advocates to determine which elements of their state’s legal architecture should be targeted for reform. 

Dream Corps/#cut50 – The organization is developing a public education campaign around fines and fees that includes publishing a series of op-eds, producing social media infographics, and a video highlighting the impacts of fines and fees and criminal justice debt.

Institute for Justice - Modeled on their extensive work on civil asset forfeiture, the Institute for Justice will conduct three phases of research to identify jurisdictions that are heavily reliant on low level violations and citations for revenue, and may be ripe for litigation.

Juvenile Justice - Through a LJAF-funded project, the Juvenile Law Center explored how the problem affects young people and their families. (See the Juvenile reports section)

Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) - With Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF) support, SPLC is developing and managing a network of leading litigators and researchers on fines and fees from across the country. This network will coordinate national strategy and reform efforts.

Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) - TPPF is publishing op-eds and reports on the impacts of fines and fees.

University of California, Los Angeles, Beth Colgan - Research on non-incarceration alternatives to fines including assessing decriminalization, diversion programs, use of day-fines and victim restitution funds. 

University of Washington, Dr. Alexes Harris - Multistate quantitative and qualitative research on the use and impacts of criminal justice fines and fees.