Carver County received $500,000 from the Bureau of Justice Assistance on Sept. 30 to implement a drug treatment court, beginning Jan. 13.

The Carver County Attorney’s Office completed a competitive application process to obtain the grant, according to press release from Carver County Attorney Mark Metz.

The federal grant program was created in response to the growing number of drug overdose deaths in the United States. Carver County Drug Court will provide intensive treatment for up to 25 participants.

The program is designed to serve high risk/high need individuals with felony and gross-misdemeanor charges, the release stated. According to the National Association of Drug Court Professionals “Drug courts are most effective for people who are addicted to intoxicating drugs or alcohol (i.e., high-need) and are at a substantial risk for reoffending or have struggled to succeed in less-intensive supervision or treatment programs (i.e., high-risk).”

Carver County Drug Court will administer evidence-based treatment and services to participants over approximately 18 to 24 months. Participant progress will be monitored by a multidisciplinary team consisting of a judge, prosecutor, defense attorney, treatment provider, law enforcement officer, probation agent and coordinator.

“Drug courts are proving to be an effective, national approach to address the serious problem of substance abuse and crime,” Metz stated. “This is accomplished by a team of court and community professionals, holding offenders accountable through close supervision, to ensure public safety, while at the same time they receive intensive treatment. Our goal is that drug courts will reduce drug dependency, reduce recidivism, improve public safety and lower the overall cost to society by holding high risk/high need individuals in the criminal justice system accountable while also promoting a lifestyle of long-term recovery.”

For more information, contact Rhonda Betcher at rbetcher@co.carver.mn.us.

Community Editor

Mark Olson, the Chaska and Chanhassen community editor who has worked in Carver County for 20 years, makes any excuse to write about local history. In his spare time, Mark enjoys perusing old books, watching blockbusters and taking Midwest road trips.

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