What is VALE?
The 21st Judicial District Victim Assistance and Law Enforcement (VALE) Program provides grant funding to agencies that provide services to crime victims. Grants are made using money collected from fines imposed on defendants convicted of certain crimes. These funds are collected and used for grants to agencies that provide services to crime victims within Mesa County.
The Colorado Legislature approved the Assistance to Victims of and Witnesses to Crimes and Aid to Law Enforcement Act that created the VALE program in 1984. The legislation created a funding mechanism for VALE programs in each of Colorado’s twenty-two judicial districts. The Act has been amended several times since its original passage in 1984. The funds collected are used for grants to agencies that provide services to crime victims within the local judicial district in which the monies are collected.
As currently enacted, the Act mandates a surcharge equal to 37% of the fine imposed for felonies, misdemeanors, juvenile offenses, and class 1 and 2 traffic offenses or a standard surcharge, whichever is greater. The standard surcharges that may be imposed are as follows: felony convictions $163.00, misdemeanor convictions $78.00, class 1 misdemeanor traffic offenses $46.00, class 2 misdemeanor traffic offenses $33.00, and class A and B traffic offenses as outlined in C.R.S. §24-4.2-104.
The Colorado Revised Statute (C.R.S.) 24-4.2 Outlines the existence and authority of VALE Boards.
By state statute, the VALE Board is provided administrative assistance by members of the District Attorney’s office. In the 21st Judicial District, the District Attorney’s Office allocates resources to assist the VALE Board by designating personnel to serve, in addition to other duties assigned, as Program Administrator and Legal Advisor.
The state Judicial Administrator’s office is assigned fiduciary responsibility of the VALE fund, also by state statute. Members of the 21st Judicial District VALE Board are appointed by the Chief Judge of the 21st Judicial District, and may serve up to three years per term with a maximum of two terms. There are five VALE Board members, all volunteers who receive no monetary remuneration for their service.