Feb 22, 2013

NADCP News: "Drug Courts Front and Center as Criminal Justice Reform Sweeps Nation"

On February 6, 2013 South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard (R) signed into law sweeping legislation aimed at cutting prison costs by diverting more people to Drug Court and other interventions. At the bill signing Governor Daugaard praised the state’s Drug Courts and the future of criminal justice in South Dakota. "We are going to change the administration of criminal justice in this state for the good of all its citizens," he said.

Last week, West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (D) spoke to legislators about the critical need to reduce corrections costs and ease the overcrowding of prisons. His prescription includes shutting down ‘pill mills’ and investing in treatment programs such as Drug Court. A few days later, North Carolina’s Governor Pat McCrory (R) emphatically called on state legislators to restore funding for Drug Courts: “For the sake of our families, please send me legislation, which will re-establish our drug treatment courts and also increase penalties for those who set up meth labs in our communities.”

Throughout January and February, governors have been giving their annual State of the State addresses to their legislatures, mapping out their policy goals and vision for the future. Governors across the country are calling for more Drug Courts and Veterans Treatment Courts, improved access to mental health treatment, support for alternatives to incarceration, and solutions to prescription drug abuse.

Gov. Dennis Daugaard signed SB70, the South Dakota Public Safety Improvement Act,
on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013, at the State Capitol

NADCP closely monitors State of the State speeches and has assembled an online guide to help you track what your governor is saying about criminal justice reform. We will continue to keep you up to date on important statewide initiatives.

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