Trump to provide Wisconsin $41 million in federal aid to address impact of violent protests in Kenosha

Image of the civil unrest in Kenosha from WISN-TV Channel 12, a media partner of BizTimes Milwaukee.
Image of the civil unrest in Kenosha from WISN-TV Channel 12, a media partner of BizTimes Milwaukee.

Last updated on September 4th, 2020 at 03:50 pm

Wisconsin will receive $41 million in federal aid to address recent civil unrest and violent protests sparked by the shooting of Jacob Blake by a Kenosha police officer, President Donald Trump announced Tuesday.

Trump and other White House officials including Attorney General William Barr visited Kenosha Tuesday to survey the damage from violent protests last week that burned, looted or damaged at least 30 businesses throughout the city.

The federal funds will support community-based crime-fighting initiatives, local victim service programs and the hiring and training of law enforcement officers and prosecutors across the state.

“As President Trump made abundantly clear today, this lawless behavior will not be allowed to stand and the federal government will provide the necessary resources to help state and local police officers who have worked hard to maintain peace and keep violence at bay,” Barr said in a statement Tuesday. “Today’s grant money will help to bolster community-based crime-fighting initiatives and provide much needed support to victims affected by the recent violence.”

The funds come from the Office of Justice Programs and Office of Community Oriented Policing Services and will support violence reduction efforts like Project Safe Neighborhoods, which enables federal, state and local agencies to coordinate enforcement activities in collaboration with community organizations.

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation will also provide business owners in Kenosha whose establishments were damaged by the violent protests with $1 million in microloans, Governor Tony Evers announced Tuesday. These loans carry an interest rate of zero with businesses eligible for an up to $20,000 loan.

The federal and state funding follow Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian’s request for $30 million in funding to help rebuild Kenosha. It is still not clear exactly how many buildings were damaged during last week’s protests nor the total cost of the damage.

The Kenosha Mayor’s office did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

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