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Commissioners Approve Probation Department To Seeks Grants

Last updated on Tuesday, November 8, 2011

(BEDFORD) - Lawrence County Commissioners approved the Probation Department to apply for three grants in their Monday morning meeting.

The Pathway grant will allow residential treatment for inmates with felony convictions that have hit rock bottom to have a second chance. This is according to Superior Court I Judge Michael Robbins, who oversees the program.

Inmates stay in a special block at the Lawrence County Jail and then spend six to nine months in a halfway house or remain under house arrest. The program deals with changing the criminal's mind set and giving them a chance for a successful life, Robbins added.

The second grant is to address domestic violence in Lawrence County. If they receive the grant, Lawrence County's program will be a pilot program for the state.

The state did an in-depth study of Lawrence County in July and found that between 2007 and 2009 more than 2,000 domestic calls were responded to by police ending in more than 500 arrests.

The grant money would be used to develop a domestic violence court. The court would address not only those who are arrested, but families and especially children. Robbins says the cycle of abuse needs to stop and you can't do that unless you address all the issues. "There are more than 500 children involved in cases in this community and that is a tragedy," he adds.

The third grant is for the Lawrence County Drug Court and will allow the program to continue. The program has been in effect for 7 years and saves the county around $18,000 per person who is in the program. More than 54 people were ordered to the program with around 96 percent completing the program successfully.

In other business:

The commissioners approved the county auction to be held Nov. 19th at the county complex. The auction will be done by Allen's Auction Service. Items from the cities of Bedford, Mitchell, and Oolitic and the Bedford Police Department and Lawrence County Sheriff's Department and Lawrence County offices will be in the auction.

Commissioners approved the purchase of three dump trucks from Palmer's Trucks in Indianapolis. Palmer's had the lowest bid at $407,425.

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