A drug treatment program that lets state inmates out early would nearly double under the budget that Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle is proposing today, says the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The expanded drug treatment is one element of a plan that increases funding for treatment, education, and job placements for inmates and others under the supervision of the Department of Corrections.
Still, the budget contains the smallest increase in corrections spending in well over a decade. The expanded early release program would create room for an additional 400 inmates a year. The treatment program, which lasts for six months, now accepts 400 men and 60 women yearly. “We are going to continue to make the investment in alcohol and drug treatment for prisoners,” Doyle said. “It’s just trying to make sure that as the people come out (of prison), they come out able to make it, and make it without drugs or alcohol.” The expansion would cost just more than $2 million over two years, but it is expected to reduce overall prison costs because more inmates would be released early.