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Dane County Seeks Proposals to Plan and Design a Combination Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Treatment and Work Release Facility

For more information contact:

Sharyn Wisniewski (608) 267-8823

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 8/17/2004

Issued By: County Executive
View only releases from County Executive
Dane County took another step forward today to cut down on offenders’ abuse of alcohol and other drugs, which contributes to repeat offenses and threatens public safety.

The county issued a Request for Proposal to plan and design a facility that has space for inmates who are on work-release, and for inmates needing treatment for Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse (AODA).

Falk put the AODA / work release facility planning and design in her 2004 Capital budget, with the backing of Sheriff Gary Hamblin. It was approved by the County Board in the 2004 budget. The RFP received approval by Falk, Hamblin and Supervisor Andy Olsen, chair of the Board’s Public Protection and Judiciary Committee (PP&J).

“Abuse of drugs and alcohol contributes to deaths on our highways, and to crime in our community,” said Falk. “We have the opportunity to attack the problem where it resides, and that is with the abuser. If we do this right, it will make a positive difference in saving lives, both of victims and of offenders.”

Sheriff Gary Hamblin said, “Dane County needs to address three issues, a worn out work release center, the need for treatment, and overcrowding in the jail. This RFP will address the worn out work release center and the need for treatment and I look forward to working to address these issues now and hopefully the overcrowding issue very soon.”

Current studies show that 60 to 80 percent of inmates in county jails nation-wide suffer from alcohol and other drug abuse or addiction. Based on a one-day snap shot on June 18, 2002, almost 50% of sentenced inmates in the Dane County Jail had one or more Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) offenses, as well as other charges. In addition, other sentenced inmates had significant AODA issues. Other charges, such as possession of drugs (THC, cocaine, and drug paraphernalia), battery such as domestic abuse, disorderly conduct, shoplifting and theft, suggest inmates may have a substance abuse problem.

Supervisor Olsen, chair of PP&J, said, “Addressing drug and alcohol abuse allows us to seek solutions that reduce repeat offenses. Combining with a Huber facility provides an efficient system."

Under the contract, a firm will conduct a needs analysis study of Dane County’s inmate population with AODA and other treatment needs, including pre-architectural and design services. The County seeks recommendations for facility designs that would provide inmate housing co-located with appropriate treatment facilities.

A full copy of the Request for Proposal can be downloaded from the county’s website at www.co.dane.wi.us/purch/purch.htm. A hard copy can be obtained by contacting the county’s purchasing office at 608-266-4131. Proposals are due September 22.

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