I sent this to a few people I thought would be interested. Got this feedback from Mike Brown, County Judge of Tom Green County.Thanks, Jim! Two thoughts come to mind: First, it's great news that there's a well-established AIC in addition to Tyler's program, since that tells us up front the idea works and likely has staying power as a long-term solution.
"Jim, Tom Green County created the Alternative Incarceration Program 10 years ago. The Smith County (Tyler) Probation (CSCD) dept. officials came here for 3 days and learned all about our program. They returned to Tyler armed with their new found knowledge and our documentation and created their program. Undisputedly, our program was the first in the state. AIC program savings to Tom Green County for FY2007 (9-1-06 thru 8-31-07) $2.284 million."
Posted with his permission. There are counties out here that get it.
Second, Mr. Turner's reader-reaction deserves grateful approbation. That's exactly what I hope folks do with Grits posts - put the information in front of decision makers who can use it and then communicate back to tell the rest of us their reaction. When that happens, this blog's influence can and occasionally has become greater than the sum or its parts. But it can only do so when readers participate, not just in the comments, but also in their local political process using the information published here.
Consider that model reader behavior, people, then go forth and do likewise.