Cash-Strapped AL County Loses Money-Saving Jail Program


More bad financial news for the beleaguered Jefferson County, Ala., justice system: a court-assistance program announced it no longer would supervise defendants awaiting trial who otherwise would remain in jail, reports the Birmingham News. The Treatment Alternatives for Safer Communities program, which has helped act as a pressure release valve for the county jail population since 1997, lost its county funding in June.

The director said the program had “exhausted our resources.” The program has supervised nearly 1,100 defendants this year who otherwise were not able to make bond, at an average cost of $5.50 per defendant per day. Jailing them would have cost $51 per day.

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