Delaware AG: Spend Settlement Funds in Low-Income Communities - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Delaware AG: Spend Settlement Funds in Low-Income Communities

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Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn on Wednesday, Dec. 30, outlined a revised proposal for use of bank settlement funds to address issues in the state's hardest hit neighborhoods. (Photo: Delaware Department of Justice) Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn on Wednesday, Dec. 30, outlined a revised proposal for use of bank settlement funds to address issues in the state's hardest hit neighborhoods. (Photo: Delaware Department of Justice)

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP/WBOC)- Attorney General Matt Denn is calling on lawmakers to use $29 million in settlements from banks to help low-income communities in Delaware.
    
Denn announced his proposal Wednesday for the remaining funds received from Bank of America and Citigroup to resolve allegations that market misconduct contributed to the financial crash in 2008.
    
Denn is proposing to spend the funds on substance abuse treatment, prison re-entry programs, community policing and community support, help providing affordable housing, foreclosure assistance, after-school and summer programs for students.

Lawmakers rejected a similar proposal from Denn in January and instead used $5 million to balance the state budget.  Another $2 million was set aside to expand policing in high-crime areas of Dover and Wilmington. The Joint Finance Committee will meet in January.

Denn said he continues to believe the settlement funds should not be used by the legislature to plug budget holes.

“Our proposal in January, and our proposal today, is that these funds be used to help lift up our state’s hardest hit communities," Denn said. "That is what is called for by the settlement agreement, and speaking for a moment as an elected official whose top priority is fighting violent crime, investing in these communities is also what we should be doing if we really want to bring down the rate of violent crime."

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