County seeks grant for the possibility of implementing drug court | InsideNoVa Culpeper – Culpeper Times


Culpeper County is making use of for a $500,000 federal grant that might assist set up a drug courtroom, which is meant to scale back recidivism charges and reduce jail inhabitants via a long-term counseling program and different rehabilitative measures.

Commonwealth Lawyer Paul Walther lately defined to the board of supervisors that this system also needs to current financial savings alternatives by lowering the funds spent on battling the drug downside. He defined drug courtroom is an alternative choice to conventional adjudication, with a course of by which judges, prosecutors, probation officers and therapy professionals collaborate to scale back crime and improve a defendant’s sobriety.

“Early on and up till I suppose in regards to the 80s or 90s, we didn’t have numerous statistics…The early approach to assault it – the warfare on medication – was primarily to lock them up and throw away the important thing. And it turned very clear that that’s not the best way to do it,” Walther stated.

Whereas the grant provides $125,000 in funding yearly over 4 years, Walther estimated annual operational prices between $127,000-$233,000. That would come with the hiring of a part- or full-time program administrator.

Over the lengthy haul, Supervisor Brad Rosenberger steered that drug courtroom would doubtless save the county cash.

Supervisors Chairman Gary Deal stated that whereas the associated fee is vital, hopefully anybody who participates in this system would obtain higher counseling and therapy than they might in any other case. Supervisor Invoice Chase stated drug courtroom can be worthwhile if it saves just some individuals.

Establishing a drug courtroom would require a 25% match, which the Virginia Division of Corrections has provided through the hiring of a probation officer. It’s also doubtless that the state would supply extra funding as soon as a drug courtroom is applied.

Whereas Supervisor Jack Frazier doubted that the offered prices are an correct depiction of the funding obligatory for a drug courtroom, he famous the significance of creating therapy being the first focus of this system. Frazier steered utilizing present employees to run this system, however Walther defined that might be a troublesome path to observe as staff have already got substantial duties.

Frazier and Supervisor Tom Underwood agreed {that a} drug courtroom would have extra bills if some staff started specializing in drug courtroom as an alternative of their conventional duties. Walther countered that there might be potential financial savings in lowering the quantity of money and time spent responding to drug calls.

In making the case in favor of drug courtroom, Walther offered a sequence of statistics illustrating the native drug downside. Walther stated it’s not possible to calculate how a lot cash is spent battling the drug downside contemplating the entire bills from the arrest via the prosecution. However he offered some figures explaining the assets concerned.

From 2016-2020, for instance, he stated the county noticed 360 overdoses, 43 of which had been deadly. Of these, he stated 216 had been heroin overdoses. These statistics, he famous, had been offered by the native legislation enforcement and don’t paint a full image of the problem as not each overdose is reported to the authorities.

Walther additionally famous that drug courtroom might save each time and money that’s spent responding to overdoses.

From 2015-2020, he stated Culpeper County EMS – which doesn’t embody volunteer items – administered 399 items of the opioid-overdose antidote naloxone, which is in any other case referred to as Narcan. Moreover, EMS spent 426 hours responding to overdoses.

In 2020, Culpeper Human Providers positioned 13 kids into foster look after drug and alcohol-related points. Each time this occurs, Walther stated, prices the county between $50,000-100,000.

From 2018-2020, drug-related felony filings within the native circuit courtroom numbered 964, 951 and 787.

Moreover, Walther stated the state saves $19,234 for every grownup participant in drug courtroom packages. Quantifying the true financial savings is difficult, he added, however the backside line is that drug courtroom saves lives and cash.

Whereas okaying the grant software, the supervisors will later additional talk about the potential of implementing drug courtroom.



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