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Dane County Seeks Fiscal Boost for Drug Offender Treatment Programs

For more information contact:

Joanne Haas, Office of the County Executive (608) 267-8823 or cell (608) 669-5606

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 7/21/2006

Issued By: County Executive
View only releases from County Executive
More non-violent offenders with alcohol and other drug abuse would get both supervision and treatment instead of jail if a state grant sought by Dane County is approved.

The county this week submitted its application to the state Office of Justice Assistance for a $210,000 share of the total $755,000 earmarked for county grants under the stateTreatment Alternatives and Diversion Program.

“This grant will help us improve public safety and effective use of our tax dollars. We already operate success jail diversion programs that are worth building upon, and the state grant is one way to do it during these tight budget days,” Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk said. “Substance abuse and the continuing cycle of such addictions are among the top factors in how a person becomes first an offender and then a repeat offender.”

The application is supported by the Dane County Sheriff, District Attorney and the courts.

The state grant dollars would be used in three areas, Falk said.

One use would be to create a pre-trial bail diversion monitoring/supervision and treatment program. Falk said the program is expected to affect the disproportionate racial make-up in the criminal justice system.

The two other uses would strengthen the county’s Drug Court Treatment Program and increase the number of slots in the Treatment Alternative Program.

A top goal of the county’s criminal justice system, Falk said, is to change behavior so offenders don’t re-offend.

The application was filed July 19. Grants are anticipated to be announced in time for a January 1 start.

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