ICYMI: Shapiro-Davis Budget Invests $1M for State Office of Gun Violence Prevention

Lt. Gov. Austin Davis Emphasizes How State Office Will Ensure Resources “Are Going to the Right Places”

HARRISBURG – Backed by the family members of gun violence victims and gun safety advocates, Lt. Gov. Austin Davis this week called on lawmakers to support Gov. Josh Shapiro’s proposal to invest $1 million for a state Office of Gun Violence Prevention to improve coordination with federal, state and local partners that are doing the work to make Pennsylvania communities safer.

“While our investments in safer communities are making a difference, now is not the time to stop those investments,” Davis said. “Now is the time to double down on our efforts and make sure that even more is being done and that we’re even more effective.”

The office would be housed within the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD), which the Lieutenant Governor leads. It will focus on four key areas:

  • Community outreach and technical assistance;
  • Interagency coordination (federal, state and local);
  • Addressing intersections of gun violence with domestic violence;
  • Data, research and evaluation, which will ensure state resources are being deployed strategically and effectively.

Funding to stand up the office is part of a broader $100 million proposed investment to address gun violence, including:  

  • A $37.5 million increase for PCCD’s Violence Intervention and Prevention program, bringing the total to $77.5 million in state funds (up from $40 million last year);
  • $37.5 million for PCCD’s Gun Violence Investigation and Prosecution Grant Program, which helps local law enforcement agencies and district attorneys’ offices investigate and prosecute gun-related crime;
  • $1.5 million to increase staffing at the Pennsylvania State Police to grow the trooper force and its civilian employees in essential units to combat gun violence;
  • $11.5 million to create a statewide Building Opportunity through Out of School Time (BOOST) program, which will aim to reduce community violence by providing more after-school learning opportunities for young people; and
  • $11 million to create more welcoming environments by building parks, addressing blight, and improving shared spaces, such as parks, streets, and playgrounds to promote safer communities.

The Shapiro-Davis budget also includes the following proposed investments to combat gun violence and improve public safety:

  • A $5 million increase for the Nonprofit Security Grant Fund; and
  • $1 million for a Firearm Injury Prevention Program within the Department of Health to enhance data collection and analysis around gun violence, engage in community education initiatives, support evidence-based interventions, and collaborate with county coroners and law enforcement agencies.

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Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Davis pushes proposed $100 million in funding to combat an ‘epidemic of gun violence’ in Pa.

Lt. Gov. Austin Davis joined gun safety advocates and those affected by gun violence to highlight the investments in Gov. Josh Shapiro’s proposed budget focused on dealing with the problem.

“Some people in this building, all they want to do is offer thoughts and prayers anytime there’s a mass shooting or a major incident of gun violence,” Davis said Tuesday from the Capitol in Harrisburg. “Let’s be clear. Thoughts and prayers are not enough. We need real action in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”

The Keystone: ‘Thoughts and prayers are not enough.’ Advocates praise Shapiro’s plan to tackle gun violence

Gun safety advocates and family members who lost loved ones due to gun violence joined Lt. Gov. Austin Davis at the Pennsylvania State Capitol in Harrisburg on Tuesday to highlight the proposed Office of Gun Violence Prevention from Gov. Josh Shapiro’s budget.

Shapiro included $100 million in the 2024-25 budget to address and prevent gun violence throughout the commonwealth. The budget also includes $1 million to start the Office of Gun Violence Prevention within the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, which Davis chairs. 

WGAL: Families of gun violence victims urge action at Pennsylvania state capitol

Family members of gun violence victims spoke alongside Lt. Governor Austin Davis about how the issue has changed lives and how the Shapiro administration plans to address it.

Members of gun violence prevention advocacy groups, such as Cease Fire PA and Moms Demand, urged the importance of legislative action.

The office would work with local law enforcement agencies to research data and evaluate trends and causes of gun violence.

It would also work to investigate the needs of a local community.

$1 million would go toward creating this office.

“This office is actually going to be a mechanism to make sure the dollars that we’re spending in terms of violence prevention are going to the right places and are making sure that we’re making investments that are really going to get at ruling out the causes of gun violence here in Pennsylvania,” Davis said.

WITF: Supporters rally behind Shapiro plan to reduce gun violence

WPMT: Shapiro administration proposes spending $100 million to address gun violence

WHTM: Advocates call for investment in Office of Gun Violence Prevention for Pennsylvania

Media Contacts

Kirstin Alvanitakis

Communications Director
Lt. Governor's Office Media