Seth Wenig, File, Associated Press
FILE - In this Feb. 23, 2012, file photo, Newark Mayor Corey Booker speaks to the media about NYPD surveillance activities in Newark before a ceremony at City Hall in Newark, N.J. Outside Washington, the NYPD's efforts drew increased criticism last week, including from Booker, mayor of New Jersey's largest city, who has complained about the NYPD's widespread surveillance there, outside New York’s police jurisdiction. Outside Washington, the NYPD's efforts drew increased criticism last week. College administrators at Yale, Columbia and elsewhere issued harsh rebukes for NYPD's infiltration of Muslim student groups and its monitoring of school websites. New Jersey's governor and the mayor of its largest city have complained about the NYPD's widespread surveillance there, outside New York’s police jurisdiction.
WASHINGTON — Millions of dollars in White House money is helping pay for New York Police Department programs that put entire American Muslim neighborhoods under surveillance.
The money is part of a little-known grant intended to help law enforcement fight drug crimes. Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the Bush and Obama administrations have provided $135 million to the New York and New Jersey region through the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program.
Some of that money — it's unclear exactly how much because the program has little oversight — has paid for the cars that plainclothes NYPD officers use to conduct surveillance on Muslim neighborhoods. It also pays for the computer systems store even innocuous information about Muslim college students, mosque sermons and social events.