MADISON COUNTY, Ala. -- Many can agree that for some people within the court system, a jail cell isn't always necessary and programs directed toward certain issues would be more beneficial.
At the Madison County Commission meeting Wednesday, the board approved a grant directed at three different programs working to keep citizens out of the jail system.
The three contracts approved were for the Madison County Adult Drug Court Program, the Madison County Mental Health Court Program, and the Madison County Veterans Treatment Court Program.
Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong says the grant was through the Alabama Office of Courts for $30,000 each, or $90,000 total. Strong says the money is going to cover everything from operations to management.
"These judges go the extra mile," says Strong. "Their efforts are to keep people out of the court system and out of our jail system."
The chairman says the big thing is that the grants will be able to help people within Madison County who could be struggling. "We've got an epidemic on our hands. It doesn't discriminate: rich, poor, young, old. We have drug issues here in our county. Mental health, it doesn't discriminate either."
Now, other alternatives to a jail cell will be more widely available.
The chairman adds the grants will also be beneficial to the Madison County taxpayers. They keep more people from behind bars, and instead, get them the help they actually need.
The next Madison County Commission meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 18 at 10 a.m. in the Madison County Courthouse. Anyone from the public is invited to attend.