Criminal Justice Planning

HOTCOG’s Criminal Justice Program grew out of the COG’s responsibility to conduct Criminal Justice Planning for the six-county region. Each year, the Criminal Justice Planner facilitates the development of Community Plans for all counties within the Heart of Texas Council of Governments’ region. The plans outline the needs and issues affecting law enforcement, juveniles and victims in each county. Gaps in services, services currently provided and services and resources the counties would like to establish in order to fill the gaps are identified in the plan. Participation in this critical aspect of the program is vital for those entities applying for funding through the Office of the Governor Criminal Justice Division (CJD). The Planner then develops a Regional Strategic Plan from the six county plans.


Regional Strategic Plans Surveys

In an effort to better serve our region’s Criminal Justice needs, the Criminal Justice program at the Heart of Texas Council of Governments (HOTCOG) has created a strategic plan for our region, comprised of individual county plans. This plan is used in many ways throughout the year, including informing the scoring process for grants. Please take a few minutes (5-7 minutes) to complete the surveys listed below. These surveys will close on Wednesday, October 13th at 5:00pm.

Click the button below to access the surveys

Juvenile Justice Services & Needs Survey Justice Assistance / General Law Enforcement Survey Victim Services & Needs Survey

2020 Community Plans

Criminal Justice Grant Program

For more information contact: Lana Gudgel, Criminal Justice Planner at 254-292-1891 or

The following Criminal Justice Grants are scored by the Criminal Justice Advisory Committee (CJAC) and supported by the Criminal Justice Planner:

  • Victims of Crime Act Fund (VOCA)
  • Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
  • Justice Assistance Grant (JAG)

Grant Application Process

  • Create an application here:
  • CJAC Scoring Meeting April 8th at 9:00 AM. Applications close February 27th.
  • It is mandatory that at least one person from your agency attend a CJD Grant Workshop if you are planning to apply for a grant and any application to be considered for approval by the COG. An additional workshop has been scheduled for Wednesday January 29th, 2020 at 9:30 a.m. If you plan to attend this workshop, you must contact the CJ Planner, Lana Gudgel, to reserve a seat. Workshops are held in the conference room at the Heart of Texas Council of Governments building, 1514 S. New Road, Waco TX.
  • CJAC prioritizes the grant applications
  • COG’s governing body approves the priority listings
  • COG submits the written priority listings to CJD.
  • CJD will verify the eligibility, reasonableness and cost effectiveness strategy of the proposed project, availability of funding and will render final funding decisions on these grant applications.
  • The COG will notify grantees of any changes in the funding recommendations.

Application Workshop PowerPoint FY 2021

FY 2019 VOCA VAWA Ap Wkshp

Criminal Justice Applications - FY 2019

Justice Assistance Grant (JAG)

  • City of Hewitt/Cellebrite Project $10,780 87.1 awarded
  • City of Morgan/Vehicle Purchase $39,750 82.7 awarded
  • Hill Co/Probation Transport Vehicle $28,400 81.5 not funded
  • City of Bellmead/Forensic Equip $14,434 80.8 awarded
  • Bosque Co/Thermal-Night Vision $14,775 71.7 awarded
  • City of Clifton/Patrol Project $48,434 71.3 not funded
  • City of West/Patrol Vehicle $42,241 67.5 not funded
  • Falls County/Infrared Cameras $29,498 67.2 not funded

Juvenile Justice Alternatives (JJA)

  • HOTCOG/Juvenile Justice Alternatives $54,316 97.0 awarded
  • Falls County/Diversion & Family Preservation $19,220 85.0 awarded $11,080

Victims of Crime Act (VOCA)

  • Advocacy Center/Trauma-focused Counselor $114,254 90.7 not funded
  • Falls Co/Victim Services $113,227 84.4 awarded

Violence Against Women (VAWA)

  • City of Bellmead/Domestic Violence Detective $38,391 87.5 funded
  • City of Waco/Family Violence Det. & Coord. $71,056 87.4 funded
  • Falls Co/Special Crimes Investigator $44,730 78.0 not awarded

Criminal Justice Advisory Committee

Chaired by Brian Swick, the Criminal Justice Advisory Committee’s (CJAC) primary responsibility is to score and prioritize grant applications for the grant programs administered through the Criminal Justice Division, Office of the Governor. The following Criminal Justice Grants are scored by the CJAC and supported by the Criminal Justice Planner:

  • Victims of Crime Act Fund (VOCA)
  • Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDP)
  • Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
  • Justice Assistance Grant (JAG)

CJAC Scoring & Operating Procedures, FY2020

CJAC Bylaws 2019 Revised PDF

For more information about the Law Enforcement Training Program, contact the Criminal Justice Planner, Lana Gudgel, at 254.292.1891 or