space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* Country Cousin
space
space
Sports Shorts
* Area Teams Kick Off Track Season
* Pillath Voted Top M&O Wrestler
* UW-Buccaneers Claim Post-Season Honors
* Ranger Duo Share M&O MVP
* No Trolling Rule For Fishing Opener

space
Peshtigo Fire
space
e-Edition
Now Available
For more information
click here
dot
THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
space
dot
space

County To Seek State Grants For Alternate Drug Sentencing

Hopefully by this time next year Marinette County will have local treatment options available for minor drug offenders. Hopefully by this time next year there will be a Drug Court functioning which can order and supervise treatment in the community for drug abusers. Hopefully the population of the Marinette County jail will have started to go down, and Marinette County will have begun to lose its dubious distinction of ranking first in the state in the percentage of heroin abusers and suicides related to drug abuse.

All these hopes led the county’s Criminal Justice Committee on Tuesday, Sept. 23 to authorize Health and Human Services Director Robin Elsner, Community Services Supervisor Rob Valentine and Judge James A. Morrison to apply to the Wisconsin Department of Justice for funds to establish a Drug Court and a Treatment and Alternatives Diversion (TAD) program to go with it. They are to write the grant application with the help of County Administrator Ellen Sorensen, who chairs the Criminal justice Coordinating Committee and is another vocal supporter of the Drug Court and the TAD program that goes with it.

Deadline for submission is Thursday, Oct. 17, and decisions are expected from the state in December. After that, local efforts could get underway to set the programs in motion. Elsner said he expects to seek $200,000 to $250,000 for the two programs.

Tuesday morning’s decision was supported by all committee members present, and came after intense discussion at their regular monthly meeting on Friday, Sept. 13, at the Health and Human Services Committee meeting on Monday, Sept. 11, at a state Department of Justice grant writing workshop last week and at various meetings for the past several months, particularly since Marinette County’s growing drug problem drew the attention in the national news media several weeks ago.

The only reservations were voiced by District Attorney Allen Brey and Clerk of Courts Linda Dumke Marquardt. Both said they believe in the Drug Court program, but their offices cannot handle any additional work load without additional staff. Judge Morrison assured them the grant application will include provisions for extra help for their offices.

“I have a permanent staffing deficit in my office,” Brey declared. I simply cannot offer to do any more work in my office. We have nothing left to give!” He said victims of crimes are waiting six months or more to see the offender brought to court. He lost an administrative secretary in his office months ago, and in the 2014 budget process he had sought another person for his office, but that request was rejected by Sorensen. “She said it was not justified!” Brey declared.

Dumke-Marquardt said although she thinks the programs are very good, her office too cannot handle additional work without additional help. She noted participants in Drug Court will pay a $700 fee and there may be other costs involved. Her office likely would need to collect and track those fees, as well as provide court reporters and maintain files. All that means more work, and her office too is already under staffed.

Morrison agreed both she and the District Attorney will need more help and assured them that will be part of the grant. He said Sorensen has indicated to him that in two years the county should be able to provide help for his office and Dumke-Marquardt’s, particularly if the jail population does indeed decline.

At a recent Towns Association meeting Morrison had reported it costs $70,000 a year to house a female prisoner at Tayceedah state prison, $35,000 a year for male prisoners at a state correctional institute, and $80,000 a year to send a youngster to Lincoln Hills - “more than it would cost to send him to Harvard.”

Morrison said the state, with only nine Drug Courts in force, is already saving $11 to $12 million a year in prison costs.

He noted that Ellen Hanneman also came to the jail on a grant program, and her work in educating prisoners so they become employable has proven highly valuable.

Elsner said even though initial funding will be for only two years, it is a 5-year grant program, “and with the Attorney General’s office behind it, I don’t see it going way soon, especially with John Nygren also behind it.”

Elsner and Valentine will be doing most of the preparation work for the applications. Jail Administrator Bob Majewski, chairing the meeting in Sorensen’s absence, asked them to meet separately with Brey and Dumke-Marquardt to determine their needs. Brey suggested there are economies of scale, and if he had a full time legal secretary, he might be able to manage.

The decision to go forward with the grant applications with 100 percent support of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Committee will be forwarded to the Law Enforcement and the Health and Human Services Committees in a quest for their blessings as well. Approval is expected.

Sorensen has said she expects Health and Human Services to be the lead agency, since they will be in charge of treatments. They will be working with the state Department of Corrections as well as the courts and law enforcement.

At the start of Tuesday’s meeting Judge Morrison reported that he, Elsner and Valentine had learned the details of the programs at a day-long conference they attended at the Attorney General’s office in Madison on Friday, Aug. 23 on “TAD” and “Smart Sentencing.”

He said the two-pronged approach is aimed at non-violent offenders who are committing crimes because of their addictions, not necessarily those charged with drug-related crimes.

TAD is pre-trial intervention, in which offenders could receive suspended sentences in return for participation in some very intense, difficult programs. Drug Court is for people who have been convicted of non-violent offenses but might be returned to society as productive citizens if their addictions are addressed.

Reports are that of the 107 Marinette County residents currently in the Marinette County jail, 33 are there for offenses directly related to the more minor type of drug offenses that could qualify for TAD.

“If less people come to jail I would be very happy,” declared Majewski, who is jail administrator for the Sheriff’s Department.

Both Morrison and Judge Dave Miron have frequently expressed frustration over having to sentence fairly minor offenders to prison because there are no local treatment alternatives available. Those sentences have proven totally ineffective in preventing repeat offenses, Morrison said.

Committee discussions stressed that 100 percent of drug addicts who serve costly jail and prison terms repeat offenses shortly after they get out and are back in the system again.

By contrast, 50 to 60 percent of offenders handled through TAD and Drug Court alternatives successfully turn their lives around.

Judge Morrison feels Marinette County has a good chance of getting its grant applications approved. Representative John Nygren chair of the Assembly’s Finance Committee, strongly supports setting the two programs up here. Marinette County last week was the first area in the state to have a training session for the grant applications. At that training they were advised to apply for both grants. The grants are for five years, but funding is awarded for only two years at a time because the state has a bi-annual budget. Funding for the full five years is anticipated, after which it is anticipated that the county can support the programs with savings realized by the number of prisoners diverted from jail.

The drug court grant does not require any local matching funds. The TAD grant requires a 25 percent local match, but that can be in the form of work by county employees or use of county facilities.

He said the grants are an opportunity for Marinette County to jump start the Drug Court and the TAD programs, which he believes will benefit everyone.

Elsner distributed a sample program from Wood County, which he said, “lays it out well.”

Committee members also received a Drug Court flow chart showing how persons arrested move through the system, subject to reports from the Sheriff’s Department, prosecutor (District Attorney) review, and team staffing with District Attorney approval. Team Staffing will be done by the TAD Coordinating Committee, which he expects will be essentially made up of current members of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Committee.

The defendant can accept or decline the program, and Morrison noted the requirements are so stringent that many do choose to simply serve their jail or prison terms rather than comply. Daily testing and counseling are required. Defendants must either have a 40-hour per week job or put in 40 hours per week of community service, and they must remain drug free. Only persons found to have drug addictions are eligible.

Sorensen has said that the Health and Human Services Committee will be the committee of jurisdiction over the TAD and Drug Court program, “which has a case management philosophy versus a law enforcement philosophy.”

“We have to do something, and this is where it starts,” Sorensen said at the meeting on Sept. 13. “They need treatment so they can become good citizens of our community.”

Both Morrison and Elsner stressed repeatedly that the TAD and Drug Court programs are only for non-violent individuals who are at moderate to high risk to re-offend if nothing is done. They said emphatically that the programs are not for “king pin drug dealers,” armed robbers, or anyone who participates in a violent crime. Addicts who sell minor amounts of drugs, or perhaps commit thefts and break-ins to support their habits are eligible. Large-scale drug dealers are not.

Assessment may be by an ADAPT team, likely through the state-supported COMPASS program, as recommended by State Probation and Parole Officer Bobbie Christopherson. She said the state provides free training and uses the system, so notes from her office would already be in there.

“Part of the idea is to knock down the silos,” she said. “To be sure there is transparency, so all facets of the criminal justice system can see what the others are doing.”

Elsner said he had no problem with the COMPASS system, but Morrison noted others present do, and that was a detail that can be worked out. Meanwhile, the goal is to get recidivism down from 100 percent to hopefully 50 percent.

Elsner said the TAD Coordinating Assessment Team will most likely be made up of all members of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Committee. They are Sorensen, Morrison, Majewski, Brey, Dumke-Marquardt, Elsner, Sheriff Jerry Sauve, County Board Member Paul Gustafson, Citizen Member Bryan Peth, Christopherson, School District Representative Corry Lambie, Public Defender Bradley Schraven, Marinette City Police Chief John Mabry, and Child Support Director Corinne Dionne. In general, the appointments are for the position, not the person.

Peth noted the dug problems are starting younger and younger, and wondered if there would be funding for programs in the schools. Morrison said part of the grant is for prevention, and there will be work with the schools. Marinette Community Foundation, Teen Courdt and a local community task force are already lined up to help.

“There are substantial things we can offer kids, but there is absolutely nothing in place here for adults,” Christiansen declared.

The program will not be for OWI offenders, at least not at the start. It is specifically aimed at drug-related offenders. Eventually an alcoholism component could be added.

Dumke-Marquardt asked about cooperation with Menominee County, and Morrison said they will do that to an extent, but the grants are supposed to be aimed at Wisconsin residents. They may contract for some residential care, and perhaps will need a halfway house.

Valentine, from the audience, said the focus is to empty jails and prisons of people who are low risk to the community and help them get off drugs or prevent them from starting.

Dumke-Marquardt told of a lady in court for cocaine possession with intent to sell. She was 32 years old and had been an addict for over 15 years. She functions to an extent and has never committed a violent crime, but she was sentenced to prison. Morrison said she would be a classic case of someone they would be able to work with through drug court or TAD, “but there is nothing in the system now to help her.”

Brey said he has spoken with presenters where programs like the ones they were discussing had been explained. He said the Hudson/St. Croix County program, set up to deal with a meth/amphetamine problem, was probably the first of its kind in the state. The District Attorney there came up with the idea and it has proven highly successful. Despite the problems his office may face, Brey declared, “This is a good program. I will be supporting it. It should work!”.

He said St. Croix/Hudson has a full time attorney on the Drug Court. “On the Drug Court side the work is intensive,” he said. “They do a complete review every day, at half an our per individual, or perhaps more.”

Elsner said in Wood County the TAD coordinator does a lot of the preparation work, but the initial review starts with law enforcement.

Successful grant applicants will share in a $1 million pool of money to set up TAD programs and $500,000 for Drug Courts.

Sorensen said at the Sept. 13 meeting that she has asked Elsner to apply for “a Cadillac system,” and if it needs to be cut down, they could do that later.


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
03-25-2015Sports
Area Teams Kick Off Track Season

03-25-2015Sports
Pillath Voted Top M&O Wrestler

03-25-2015Sports
UW-Buccaneers Claim Post-Season Honors

03-25-2015Sports
Ranger Duo Share M&O MVP

03-25-2015Perspectives
Country Cousin

03-25-2015Perspectives
From our readers

03-25-2015Perspectives
Tales from the old-timer

03-25-2015Obituaries
Leonard Walters

03-25-2015Obituaries
Robert Talbot

03-25-2015Obituaries
William H. Myers

03-25-2015Obituaries
Susan A. Mejer

03-25-2015Obituaries
Eric P. Marquis

03-25-2015Obituaries
Joseph D. Kubasik

03-25-2015Obituaries
Elmer R. Knutson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Margaret E. Jamison

03-25-2015Obituaries
Vernon L. Hollister

03-25-2015Obituaries
Edward F. Harris

03-25-2015Obituaries
Dennis C. Hanson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Margaret Gorski

03-25-2015Obituaries
Daniel M. Carlson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Robert J. Bell

03-25-2015Obituaries
George W. Adams

03-25-2015Obituaries
Minnie A. Swanson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Charlotte T. Robison

03-25-2015Obituaries
Gladys M. Peters

03-25-2015Obituaries
Gerald J. Knutson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Ken Jendrusiak

03-25-2015Obituaries
Louis C. Hellermann

03-25-2015Obituaries
Larry D. Godson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Scottie J. Fifarek

03-25-2015Obituaries
Daniel G. Diercks

03-25-2015Obituaries
Ethel J. Bryngelson

03-25-2015Obituaries
Esther M. Borths

03-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Winners in Wagner Benefit Card Party

03-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Authors To Visit Wausaukee Library

03-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
T/Wausaukee Against County Assessing, Okay Variance

03-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wagner OK Purchase Of New Tender Truck

03-25-2015Community - Crivitz
Hundreds Attend Rural Life Day in Crivitz

03-25-2015Community - Crivitz
Walleye Spawning Project on Lake Noquebay

03-25-2015Community - Crivitz
CBA/CRA Annual Banquet at Rene’s

03-25-2015Community - Crivitz
CBA Easter Egg Hunt is April 4

03-25-2015Community - Coleman
Library Lists Month’s Events

03-25-2015Community - Coleman
Annual Auction at Faith Christian School

03-25-2015Community - Coleman
Coleman-Pound Lions Brunch Palm Sunday

03-25-2015Community - Coleman
New Church To Open in Pound

03-25-2015News
Klondike Little League Signup

03-25-2015News
Pembine Craft Sales April 11

03-25-2015News
Lena Pathfinders Rummage Sale

03-25-2015Front Page
BARN FIRE

03-25-2015Front Page
3 Killed In Bank Robbery Spree

03-25-2015Front Page
Coleman School Tables High School Remodeling

03-25-2015Front Page
Peshtigo Persons of Year Banquet March 29

03-25-2015Front Page
CJCC Seeks Grant For Local Drug Treatment

03-18-2015Community - Coleman
Coleman Church Fish Fry Mar. 20

03-18-2015Sports
No Trolling Rule For Fishing Opener

03-18-2015Sports
Wausaukee Lions Bowlers Host Over 225 Games, 600 Series

03-18-2015Sports
40th State Girls Basketball Tourney Crowns Five Champs

03-18-2015Sports
WIAA Boys 100th State Basketball Tournament

03-18-2015Perspectives
Country Cousin

03-18-2015Perspectives
From our readers

03-18-2015Perspectives
Tales from the old-timer

03-18-2015Obituaries
Robert A. Van Norman, Sr.

03-18-2015Obituaries
Steven J, Sharpe

03-18-2015Obituaries
Linda J. Porter

03-18-2015Obituaries
Frank A. Peterson

03-18-2015Obituaries
Helen L. Peterson

03-18-2015Obituaries
Michael D. Olsen

03-18-2015Obituaries
Rev. Dr. Howard E. Nelson

03-18-2015Obituaries
Fred Kuhnle

03-18-2015Obituaries
Joyce Kleinke

03-18-2015Obituaries
Kenneth C. Hult

03-18-2015Obituaries
Sandra L. Heck

03-18-2015Obituaries
Robert W. Hafeman

03-18-2015Obituaries
Claryce M. Finger

03-18-2015Obituaries
Gail Marie Becker

03-18-2015Obituaries
Jean Ann Stocker

03-18-2015Obituaries
Scott E. Seymour

03-18-2015Obituaries
Thomas A. Schloegel

03-18-2015Obituaries
John A. Payant

03-18-2015Obituaries
Dorraine Pantti

03-18-2015Obituaries
Felicia A. Klatkiewicz

03-18-2015Obituaries
Kenneth P. Herlache

03-18-2015Obituaries
Alice M. Hansen

03-18-2015Obituaries
Margaret Greening

03-18-2015Obituaries
Larry Curran

03-18-2015Obituaries
Clark P. Clermont, Sr.

03-18-2015Obituaries
Margaret M. Berger

03-18-2015Obituaries
Robert Bence

03-18-2015Obituaries
Myrtle E. Beaupre

03-18-2015Obituaries
Walter S. Banko

03-18-2015Obituaries
Donald C. Flom

03-18-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Woman Gets $2500 Grant

03-18-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Board Hears Goals of Achievement Plans

03-18-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wagner Fire Department 2nd Card Party Winners

03-18-2015Community - Wausaukee
Unit 66 Auxiliary Hears Reports

03-18-2015Community - Crivitz
CBA Easter Egg Hunt is April 4

03-18-2015Community - Crivitz
Country Gospel Jam March a 20

03-18-2015Community - Crivitz
CRA/CBA Banquet, Persons of Year April 13

03-18-2015Community - Crivitz
Loomis Historical Meeting April 2

03-18-2015Community - Coleman
Lioness Host Parade of Checks

03-18-2015Community - Coleman
Coleman Elementary PTO Luau Dance

03-18-2015Community - Coleman
FBC Hosts AWANA Grand Prix Program

03-18-2015News
Village of Coleman T-Ball Sign-Up

03-18-2015News
1965 Class To Plan Reunion

03-18-2015News
Annual Auction at Faith Christian School

03-18-2015News
Coleman-Pound Lions Brunch Palm Sunday

03-18-2015Front Page
Enter Not Guilty Pleas In Child Neglect Case

03-18-2015Front Page
Architects, Board Work Again On New Peshtigo High School

03-18-2015Front Page
Town of Peshtigo OKs Land Use For Dog Park

03-18-2015Front Page
Marinette High School Walls Need Repair

03-18-2015Front Page
City of Peshtigo Police Warn of Donation Scam

03-11-2015Sports
Peshtigo High School Bowlers Take 12th at State Competition

03-11-2015Sports
Cougars Clipped By Cardinals In Title Match

03-11-2015Sports
Niagara Falls Short Of Comeback

03-11-2015Sports
Three Area Teams Advance To Sectionals

03-11-2015Perspectives
Country Cousin

03-11-2015Perspectives
From our readers

03-11-2015Perspectives
Tales from the old-timer

03-11-2015Obituaries
Constance D. Szoke

03-11-2015Obituaries
Floyd D. Schultz

03-11-2015Obituaries
Irene C. Sanders

03-11-2015Obituaries
James A. Reed

03-11-2015Obituaries
Elaine A. Nelson

03-11-2015Obituaries
Ida E. Moore

03-11-2015Obituaries
Leroy W. Lutzke

03-11-2015Obituaries
Dewane C. Hummel

03-11-2015Obituaries
Howard J. Hubbard

03-11-2015Obituaries
Timothy Dolata

03-11-2015Obituaries
Franklin L. Bjorklund, Jr.

03-11-2015Obituaries
Lucille Blahnik

03-11-2015Obituaries
Earl R. Vaughn, Jr.

03-11-2015Obituaries
Bernice A. Van Eyck

03-11-2015Obituaries
Elizabeth M. Sommerfeld

03-11-2015Obituaries
Norman F. Smith

03-11-2015Obituaries
Philip Erwin Schmidt

03-11-2015Obituaries
Donald F. Photenhauer

03-11-2015Obituaries
Paul Pfeiffer

03-11-2015Obituaries
Joseph A. Peters

03-11-2015Obituaries
Gloria M. Peters

03-11-2015Obituaries
Nancy C. Marzano

03-11-2015Obituaries
Marliss-ann Lundquist

03-11-2015Obituaries
Pauline B. Lindquist

03-11-2015Obituaries
Versa Gibson Hebert

03-11-2015Obituaries
Melvin Haack

03-11-2015Obituaries
Leonard G. Gasall

03-11-2015Obituaries
Betty J. Forcey

03-11-2015Obituaries
Robert E. Ewald

03-11-2015Obituaries
Jean T. Elliott

03-11-2015Obituaries
Lois A. Behnke

03-11-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Rec Youth Baseball/Softball Sign Up


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Wisconsin lawmakers passed a bill with a 76-22 vote that would increase the maximum speed limit to 70 mph in approved areas. Do you agree that the speed limit should be increased?
space Yes
No
Undecided
space
TO VOTE CLICK
YES, NO or UNDECIDED

Suggest a Question
space .
space
FRONT
space
.
space
CLASSIFIEDS
space
.
space
COMMUNITY
space
.
space
GUEST BOOK
space
.
space
NEWS
space
.
space
OBITS
space
.
space
PERSPECTIVES
space
.
space
SPORTS
space
.
space
SUBSCRIBE
space
.
space
.
space
PESHTIGO FIRE
space
.
space
CUSTOM PRINTING
space
.
space
TIMES' SAVER
space
.
space
Click for Peshtigo, Wisconsin Forecast
FORECAST
space
Quick...
News or Ad Search
Enter News key words.
Enter Ad key words.



Peshtigo Times
841 Maple St
PO Box 187
Peshtigo, WI 54157
Phone: 715-582-4541
Email:
News@
PeshtigoTimes.com

space
Fax: 715-582-4662
© 2000-2015
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites