750 Administration of Justice:Eliminate Violence Against Women Act Grants

Savings in Millions of Dollars
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019
  • 2020
  • 2021
  • 2022
  • 2023
  • 2024
  • 2025
  • 2016-2020
  • 2016-2025


Savings are expressed as budget authority as reported on page 231 of “Analytical Perspectives, Budget of the United States Government, Fiscal Year 2015, Table 29-1. Federal Programs by Agency and Account”. Budget authority is not provided for 2025, but is assumed to increase at the same rate as the geometric mean of the previous nine years.


Technical Notes on Scoring

CBO Baseline

Unless otherwise noted, calculations for savings for each recommendation relies on the most recent Congressional Budget Office baseline, as found in “An Update to the Budget and Economic Outlook: 2014 to 2024,” published August 27, 2014, has been used.

Savings “Totals”

While totals for the five and 10 year savings are provided by section and for the complete set of recommendations, there are two reasons they should not be viewed as representing total savings for The Budget Book.

First, as noted in the introduction, The Heritage Foundation would recommend that the savings realized in the Function 050 Defense section would stay within the Department of Defense to strengthen the nation’s defense capabilities.

Second, the numbers cannot be deemed to represent the realized savings if every single recommendation were adopted because policy changes made in one program can impact spending levels in other programs.  Thus, the numbers in the table do not reflect any potential interactions between the various policy changes affecting spending or savings.


Heritage Recommendation:

Eliminate Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) grants. This proposal saves $428 million in 2016, and $4.7 billion over 10 years.


We’re against violence against women. We are also against failed federal programs. End VAWA.

VAWA grants should be terminated, because these services should be funded locally. Using federal agencies to fund the routine operations of domestic violence programs that state and local governments could provide is a misuse of federal resources and a distraction from concerns that are truly the province of the federal government.

The principal reasons for the existence of the VAWA programs are to mitigate, reduce, or prevent the effects and occurrence of domestic violence. Despite being created in 1994, grant programs under the VAWA have not undergone nationally representative, scientifically rigorous experimental evaluations of effectiveness.

The Government Accountability Office concluded that previous evaluations of the VAWA programs “demonstrated a variety of methodological limitations, raising concerns as to whether the evaluations will produce definitive results.” Further, the evaluations were not representative of the types of programs funded nationally by the VAWA. In addition to The Heritage Foundation and GAO, others have noted that there is virtually no evidence that the VAWA programs are effective.

We’re against violence against women. We are also against failed federal programs. End VAWA.

Contributing Expert

David B. Muhlhausen, Ph.D. is a leading expert on criminal justice programs in The Heritage Foundation's Center for Data Analysis. A Research Fellow in Empirical Policy Analysis at the think tank, Muhlhausen has testified frequently before Congress on the efficiency and effectiveness of law enforcement grants administered by the U.S. Justice Department.

See publications by David B. Muhlhausen, Ph.D.

David B. Muhlhausen, Ph.D.Research Fellow in Empirical Policy Analysis

Heritage Expert

Hans A. von Spakovsky is an authority on a wide range of issues – including civil rights, civil justice, the First Amendment, immigration, the rule of law and government reform -- as a senior legal fellow in The Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.

See publications by Hans A. von Spakovsky

Hans A. von SpakovskyManager, Election Law Reform Initiative and Senior Legal Fellow

Additional Reading