Budget Crisis Perfect Time for Community Court to Save Seattle $65,000
"In 2010 the U.S. Department of Justice named Seattle Community Court one of three Mentor Courts in the nation that provide a model other cities can use in framing their responses to chronic nonviolent misdemeanor offenders. The number of defendants choosing Seattle's program has grown from 228 in March 2005, when the court was created, to 1,024 in 2009, and the number of community service hours contributed totals more than 38,000.
So far, by providing an alternative to incarceration the Community Court has saved the city 2 million dollars, and the mural project alone saved $65,000, said Judge Edsonya Charles at the dedication ceremony. City Attorney Pete Holmes added that during a budget crisis it is particularly wise to support a program that repairs neighborhoods while providing “restorative justice” instead of an expensive “warehouse (for) people that have lost their way.”
For full article: http://crosscut.com/blog/crosscut/19865/Giving-time-instead-of-doing-time,-offenders-save-the-city-$65,000/