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Juvenile Justice gets half its budget for now
new deh county commission juvenile funding juv services building for web
The Barton County Commission Monday morning heard an update on the Juvenile Services Office All Stars Program from Director Marissa Woodmansee. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

 Admittedly, it makes planning difficult, but the 20th Judicial District Juvenile Services will only have the first half of its 2017 budget to work with for now.

The Barton County Commission Monday morning approved the request for the department’s 2017 Half Budget as prepared by Director Laurie White. The budget was prepared based on new regulations from the Kansas Department of Corrections – Juvenile Services, which funds many of the programs the department offers, said Juvenile Intake and Assessment Coordinator Marissa Woodmansee. 

“This is all Kansas Department of Corrections has allotted at this time,” Woodmansee said. This funding covers July 1 through Dec. 31.

The amount approved was $317,923.91. This is divvied up among the four core programs funded by DOC, including $106,183 for juvenile intake and assessment, $79,819 for juvenile intensive supervised probation, $115,343 for community case management and $16,578.91 for prevention.

The change came about as part of Kansas Senate bill 367 which amended the state’s juvenile justice system, she said. Now, her office is anticipating more new guidelines as the staff is expected to come up with plans on how to move forward.

Among these may be outsourcing some of the services Juvenile Services offers or emphasizing home-based supervision.

Although not entirely tied to the state’s current budgetary woes, there is some connection. “It shows what a sorry state the state’s budget is in,” said Commissioner Jennifer Schartz, adding it makes for poor planning.

The 20th Judicial District Juvenile Services serves a five county area consisting of Barton, Stafford, Ellsworth, Rice and Russell counties.  Juvenile Services is the host agency for six separate programs available to all youth and families in the Judicial District, four of which receive DOC money. There are programs that are attended on a voluntary basis and those that are court ordered.

These programs represent a provide a variety of services from prevention to intervention and ending with graduated sanctions programs.

The department also administers Teen Court, Project S.T.A.Y. (School Truancy Alternative for Youth) and Journey to Change.