Counties empowered to create consolidated drug courts. PA 096-0776.
Illinois lawmakers recently amended the Drug Court Treatment Act to allow counties in the same judicial district to form a single drug court. Under the amended law, the chief judge must establish a drug court to serve multiple counties when county boards in the same judicial circuit agree to form such a court. 730 ILCS 166/15. The previous language merely permitted, but did not require, chief judges to establish a drug court.
County boards in the same judicial circuit now can adopt a resolution approving the formation of a single drug court to serve the counties. The county boards must forward a copy of the resolution to the chief judge in the judicial circuit. The chief judge then will create a drug court to serve the counties. If drug courts already exist in the counties, the judge will re-organize them into a single court. Courts may delay establishing the new drug courts for up to two years if a state's attorney in any of the counties affected can show a lack of necessary resources or financial hardship.
Drug courts are designed to provide treatment for non-violent drug addicts, instead of imprisoning them. Those who successfully complete drug court programs can have charges dropped or sentences reduced.
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|Publication:||Illinois Bar Journal|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2010|
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