2003 Regular Session
To: Judiciary A; Appropriations
By: Representative Barnett (92nd)
AN ACT TO PROVIDE FOR DRUG COURT TREATMENT PROGRAMS; TO SPECIFY THE PURPOSE AND GOALS OF THIS ACT; TO DEFINE CERTAIN TERMS; TO PROVIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR PARTICIPATION IN SUCH PROGRAMS; TO PROVIDE FOR THE ADMINISTRATION OF SUCH PROGRAMS; TO PROVIDE THAT SUCCESSFUL COMPLETION OF A DRUG DIVISION PROBATION PROGRAM MAY RESULT IN EXPUNCTION OF CRIMINAL RECORD; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. (1) The Legislature of Mississippi recognizes the critical need for judicial programs to reduce the incidence of alcohol and drug use, alcohol and drug addiction, and crimes committed as a result of alcohol and drug use and alcohol and drug addiction. It is the intent of the Legislature to create a program to facilitate the creation, certification, support, and funding of local drug court programs adaptable to chancery, circuit and youth courts.
(2) "Drug Court," for the purpose of this act, means an immediate and highly structured intervention process for substance abuse treatment of eligible defendants or juveniles that:
(a) Brings together substance abuse professionals, local social programs, and intensive judicial monitoring; and
(b) Follows the key components of drug courts published by the Drug Court Program Office of the United States Department of Justice.
SECTION 2. The goals of the drug court programs funded under this act include the following:
(a) To reduce alcoholism and other drug dependencies among adult and juvenile offenders and defendants and among respondents in juvenile petitions for abuse, neglect, or both;
(b) To reduce criminal and delinquent recidivism and the incidence of child abuse and neglect;
(c) To reduce the alcohol-related and other drug-related court workload;
(d) To increase personal, familial, and societal accountability of adult and juvenile offenders and defendants and respondents in juvenile petitions for abuse, neglect, or both; and
(e) To promote effective interaction and use of resources among criminal and juvenile justice personnel, child protective services personnel, and community agencies.
SECTION 3. (1) The Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office is established within the structure of the Administrative Office of Courts to facilitate the creation, certification, support and funding of local drug court programs.
(2) The Supreme Court may hire four (4) employees to accomplish statewide administration of the drug court program; one (1) employee shall be the statewide director of drug court implementation as a deputy position to the director of the Administrative Office of Courts, and the remaining three (3) authorized positions shall be deputy drug court directors who shall be hired from each Supreme Court district to coordinate implementation of the drug court program in the courts located within that Supreme Court district under the supervision of the statewide director.
SECTION 4. (1) The State Drug Courts Advisory Committee is established to develop and periodically update proposed statewide evaluation plans and models for monitoring all critical aspects of drug court programs. The committee must provide these proposed evaluation plans to the Chief Justice and the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office. The Committee shall be chaired by the Director of the Administrative Office of Courts and shall consist of not less than seven (7) members appointed by the Director and broadly representative of the courts, law enforcement, corrections, juvenile justice, child protective services, and substance abuse treatment communities.
(2) The State Drug Court Advisory Committee may also make recommendations to the Chief Justice, the Director of the Administrative Office of Courts, the Drug Courts Program Director and state officials concerning improvements to drug court policies and procedures. The committee may make suggestions as to the criteria for eligibility, and other procedural and substantive guidelines for the drug court operation.
(3) The State Drug Courts Advisory Committee shall act as arbiter of disputes arising out of the operation of drug programs established under this act and make recommendations to improve the drug programs; it shall also make recommendations to the Supreme Court necessary and incident to compliance with established rules.
SECTION 5. (1) Before a court can establish an alcohol and drug services program, it must ensure that;
(a) The drug court is certified by the committee; and
(b) The court that established the drug court determines that in order to fully implement the purposes of the program that the treatment or rehabilitation service is necessary.
(2) A court having jurisdiction in a city, county or district may establish an alcohol and drug services program.
(3) Each individual drug court judge may establish rules and may make special orders and rules as necessary which shall not be in conflict with rules promulgated by the Supreme Court.
(4) In order to be eligible for the local drug court program, the participant must satisfy each of the following criteria:
(a) The participant cannot have any felony convictions for any offenses which are crimes of violence.
(b) The crime before the court cannot be a crime of violence, including domestic violence.
(c) Other criminal proceedings alleging commission of a crime of violence cannot be pending against the participant.
(d) The participant cannot have been convicted of burglary of an inhabited dwelling if the participant has a record of one or more prior felony convictions.
(e) The crime before the court cannot be a charge of driving under the influence of alcohol or any other drug or drugs that resulted in the death of a person.
(f) The crime charged cannot be one of distribution, possession with intent to distribute, production, manufacture or cultivation of controlled dangerous substances.
(5) Except as provided in Section 5 of this act, an alcohol and drug services program and accompanying services and treatment facilities shall be open only to the individuals over whom the court has jurisdiction.
(6) The court may agree to provide the services and facilities of a program for individuals referred from another court. For circuit cases transferred from another jurisdiction, the receiving judge shall act as a special master and make recommendations to the sentencing judge for further action, adjudication, etc.
(7) (a) A program may provide for eligible individuals a range of necessary intervention services, including the following:
(i) Screening for eligibility and other appropriate services;
(ii) Clinical assessment;
(v) Service coordination and case management.
(b) A program may also provide a range of necessary treatment and rehabilitation services, including the following:
(i) Emergency services;
(iv) Rehabilitative care.
(8) Before an alcohol and drug services program may be established, the court must do the following: Have a written statement from the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office approving the establishment of the program and the plans for operation.
(9) The court must submit a petition for approval to the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office containing the following:
(a) A full description of a proposed program.
(b) A budget for the program, supported by statistics showing the total fines and costs collected by the court in the most recent year.
(c) Details on the implementation of the program.
(10) The court is responsible for the administration of the program.
(11) The court may appoint such full or part-time employees it deems necessary to implement the program.
(12) Program employees or contractors shall perform duties the court assigns.
(13) As used in this act:
(a) "Committee" refers to the State Drug Courts Advisory Committee established under Section 4 of this act.
(b) "State Drug Courts Program Office" means the office created in Section 3 that shall facilitate the creation, certification, support, and funding to local drug court programs.
(c) "Effective date" means the date established by the committee after which minimum employment standards will be required for persons employed in court drug and alcohol programs.
(14) A program established under this act is subject to the regulatory powers of the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office established by this act.
(15) With regard to alcohol and drug services programs established under this act, the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office may do the following:
(a) Ensure that programs comply with rules adopted under this section and applicable federal regulations.
(b) Revoke the authorization of a program upon a determination that the program does not comply with rules adopted under this section and applicable federal regulations.
(c) Make agreements and contracts to effectuate the purposes of this act with:
(i) Another department, authority, or agency of the state;
(ii) Another state;
(iii) The federal government;
(iv) A state supported or private university; or
(v) A public or private agency.
(d) Directly, or by contract, approve and certify programs established under this act.
(e) Require, as a condition of operation, that each program created or funded under this act be certified according to rules established by the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office.
(f) Adopt rules to implement this act.
(16) (a) The costs of an alcohol and drug services program established under this act shall be paid out of user fees and such other state, federal or private funds that may from time to time be made available for same.
(b) The court shall fix the compensation of employees and contractors.
(c) The court may assess such reasonable fees for participation in the program or sanctions that it deems appropriate.
(d) All monies received from any source by the drug program shall be accumulated in a county or city fund to be used only for drug court purposes. Any funds remaining in this fund at the end of a fiscal year shall not lapse into any general fund, but shall be retained in said fund for the funding of further activities by the drug court.
(17) A program may apply for and receive the following:
(a) Gifts, bequests, and donations from private sources.
(b) Grant and contract money from governmental sources.
(c) Other forms of financial assistance approved by the court to supplement the budget.
(18) (a) The Mississippi Drug Courts Program fund is established for the purpose of administering, certifying, and supporting alcohol and drug services programs under this act. The fund shall be administered by the Mississippi Drug Courts Program Office established under this act.
(b) The Treasurer shall invest the money in the fund not currently needed to meet the obligations of the fund in the same manner as other public funds may be invested.
(c) Money in the fund at the end of the fiscal year does not revert to the state general fund.
(19) "Chemical tests" means the analysis of an individual's: (a) blood, (b) breath, (c) hair, (d) sweat, (e) saliva, (f) urine; or (g) other bodily substance to determine the presence of alcohol or a controlled substance.
(20) (a) As a condition of participation in an alcohol and drug services program, a participant may be required to undergo a chemical test or a series of chemical tests as specified by the program. A participant is liable for the costs of all chemical tests required under this section, regardless of whether the costs are paid to the court's alcohol and drug services program or the laboratory.
(b) A laboratory that performs a chemical test under this section shall report the results of the test to the program.
(21) (a) A person does not have a right to participate in an alcohol and drug services program under this act.
(b) The director and members of the professional and administrative staff of an alcohol and drug services program who perform duties in good faith under this act are immune from civil liability for:
(i) Acts or omissions in providing services under this act; and
(ii) The reasonable exercise of discretion in determining eligibility to participate in an alcohol and drug services program.
(22) If the participant completes the local drug court program and all requirements of his court orders, including the payment of fines and fees assessed, the charge and prosecution shall be dismissed. If the defendant or participant was sentenced at the time of entry of plea of guilty, the successful completion of the drug court program and other requirements of probation or suspension of sentence will result in the record of criminal conviction being expunged. However, no expunction of any implied consent violation shall be allowed.
SECTION 6. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2003.