BUDGETING FOR BETTER PUBLIC SAFETY

Written by on April 11, 2013 in News

We want our state to be the safest possible place for Iowans. The Justice System Budget (SSB 1249) has been approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee with that goal in mind.
Corrections experts and health professionals have told us that the offenders in our prisons and community-based corrections facilities are changing. Incidence of mental illness has increased, with offenders requiring more supervision and treatment. SSB 1249 provides resources to the Department of Corrections to hire the staff to meet those needs and enhance safety at our institutions.
The bill also helps Community Based Corrections Districts open facilities that have already been built but are not yet in use. This is a smart move that will help limit the wait for those in need of critical mental health services. Funding for community-based corrections also provides for efforts to deter future crime and help offenders become contributing members of their communities.
Victims’ assistance grants will see an increase in funding. These grants go to local programs that provide housing and other help to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Additional resources will allow survivors to stay away from dangerous living situations, get the skills they need to hold down a job and deal with the trauma they’ve experienced.
We also increase the number of troopers on Iowa’s roads. More officers on patrol will allow them to more quickly respond to accidents and other problems—ultimately improving safety and saving lives.

UPCOMING PUBLIC FORUMS
Saturday, April 20
7:30 AM Fairfield Legislative Breakfast
Sponsored by Chamber of Commerce
At Best Western Fairfield Inn
2200 W Burlington Avenue, Fairfield
Saturday, April 20
10:00 AM Washington Legislative Forum
Sponsored by Chamber of Commerce
At Washington County Courthouse
222 W. Main Street, Washington
Saturday, April 27
8:30 AM Mount Pleasant Legislative Forum
Sponsored by Chamber of Commerce
At Iowa Wesleyan College Library
601 N Main St, Mt Pleasant

Additional information
This is a legislative update from Senator Rich Taylor, representing Henry and Lee counties and portions of Washington and Jefferson counties. For newsletters, photos and further information, go to www.senate.iowa.gov/senator/taylor.

To contact Senator Taylor during session, call the Senate Switchboard at 515-281-3371. Otherwise he can be reached at home at 319-931-1568. E-mail him at rich.taylor@legis.iowa.gov.

Senator Taylor is vice-chair of the Agriculture Committee. He also serves on the Economic Growth, Judiciary, Local Government and Transportation committees, as well as the Justice Systems Budget Subcommittee.

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