Purpose of the Drunk Driving Trust Fund
DDTF funding is intended to provide services that directly assist victims, witnesses, and their family members and will aid the needs of victims of impaired/OUI driving incidents. Services include, but are not solely limited to, advocacy, support, and counseling. Prevention, education, and training activities are also considered allowable activities.
OUI related offenses are not limited to cars, any motor vehicle such as a boat or motor cycle counts. Fees assessed to offenders are assessed to all OUI incidents whether a victim was involved or not.
Services funded by the DDTF are meant solely for victims of OUI related crimes and incidents. To be eligible for services under the Drunk Driving Trust Fund, a victim must have been involved in an Operating Under the Influence incident (MGL Ch. 90 Section 24 “Driving While Under Influence…”) and either be a resident of Massachusetts or the incident must have occurred in Massachusetts. A criminal charge is not necessary for a victim to be eligible for services.
The Drunk Driving Trust Fund (DDTF) was created by Massachusetts General Law (MGL) Chapter 52 of the Acts of 2002, which enacted Section 66 of Chapter 10 and changed Section 24(1)(a)(1) of Chapter 90 of the MGL (see I. INTRODUCTION, C. Drunk Driving Trust Fund, ii. Legislation). In accordance with the requirement of the Drunk Driving Trust Fund enabling statute, MOVA met with representatives of the Massachusetts Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the Department of Public Health’s Bureau of Substance Abuse to establish criteria for the distribution of these funds to service providers. In the winter of 2003, MOVA contacted other states’ service providers to this victim population to gather information that was used to help inform these guidelines. Awards were first made in 2004 and are currently procured on an annual basis.
The governing statute was most recently updated in July 2012. These updates allow the Victim and Witness Assistance Board to approve grant funds for awards to community-based programs and public agencies in the Commonwealth to provide counseling, advocacy, and support services to victims, witnesses, and their family members of crashes caused by persons driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol. The Board, at their discretion, may also permit the allocation of funds for the purpose of impaired driving prevention, education, and training services.