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Alpena drug court pursues grant to sustain program

Submitted by Phil Heimerl on February 16, 2012 – 2:14 amNo Comment

Organizers of the adult drug court program in Alpena and Montmorency counties are pursuing a large grant to ensure the sustainability of the program for at least the next three years.

The program is designed to help non-violent criminals kick their drug or alcohol addictions and make them more productive members of society. 

Participants must pay a fee and need to be accepted into the program, which if successfully completed can lead to a lesser jail sentence or some other reduction in punishment.

It will cost about $465,000 to sustain the program from October of this year through September 2015.  Organizers want to apply for a grant that will pick up roughly 75 percent of those costs, or $350,000.  The remainder must be a local match which will consist of volunteer hours, participant fees and fundraising efforts.

Organizers are also hiring the nurse at the jail to provide weekend drug testing; and former city of Alpena detective Larry Thomson will be paid $10,000 a year to handle case paperwork and perform home visits. 

The local adult drug program was launched in September 2011 and so far organizers believe it has been a success.

The grant application must still be approved by the full board of county commissioners which meets Tuesday, February 28. 

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