Tri States Public Radio Staff
Fri November 20, 2009
McDonough County Asks For More Time To Create Drug Court
Macomb, IL – McDonough County is looking to delay the implementation of a drug court. The choice to create the entity used to be optional, but the state recently made it mandatory for each judicial circuit to have one.
McDonough County state's attorney assistant Kristen Petrie says the drug court would provide a different way to handle drug specific cases. She says it's very hands on and would provide additional court and addition services.
But the problem is that it's too expensive. That's why the County Board approved a measure that will formally ask the state to allow the county to wait two more years before the new court is created.
Petrie says there's no way McDonough County could handle the increased case loads a drug court would bring.
"We, right now already, have an overload in our court services department and they're looking at some cutbacks already," says Petire. "This would go the other way. This would demand more time for them, more hands on, this would give them a much greater capacity of clients they'd be dealing with."
McDonough County joins Hancock, Fulton, Warren and other western Illinois counties to comprise the Ninth Judicial Circuit. That means the decision to extend the drug court creation deadline by two years is not solely decided by McDonough County. But, Petrie says McDonough has a good working relationship with surrounding counties. She hopes other Ninth Circuit counties will follow suit and request the same two year delay.