Democratic Candidates for County Council Geoff McKim, Lee Jones, and Cheryl Munson call on the County Council to invest in a permanent facility for the Monroe County Community Corrections program.
Community Corrections is an innovative program that provides a continuum of alternatives to incarceration, including public restitution, road crew, day reporting, and home detention. The program is essential to keeping the jail population below the mandatory caps.
Currently the program is funded entirely through user fees and a grant from the Indiana Department of Corrections. However, these revenue sources have not kept pace with the needs; without direct local investment, this award-winning program could be forced to scale back. County Council President Geoff McKim says that it is time for Monroe County Government to step up and invest directly in this vital program.
McKim explained that the Community Corrections program pays over $80,000 per year on rent for their current facility in the Johnson Hardware building on 7th Street – funds that should be spent on programming to reduce recidivism instead. “Purchasing a Community Corrections Center would allow us to stop wasting critical programming funds on rent,” McKim says.
County Council candidate Lee Jones also warns that exceeding the jail population caps would force the County to pay to transport and house offenders in other facilities. “Community Corrections is the best tool available for providing treatment to non-violent offenders and keeping the jail population beneath the caps,” Jones says.
County Council candidate, and former Indian Creek township official, Cheryl Munson points out that the justice system makes up the majority of county expenditures. “Our jail houses too many repeat offenders,” Munson says. “We need to make investments in the justice system in ways that will shut that revolving door. Corrections programs can lower the costs of operating the jail while improving the outcomes for inmates and their families.”
McKim, Jones, and Munson all agree that a Community Corrections facility would be a good investment and would allow the program to pay for services, not for rent.
Contact: Geoff McKim, firstname.lastname@example.org, 812.360.7981