Craighead County addresses court fines, mentally ill in jail

Stepping up initiative passes
Two resolutions passed (Source: KAIT)
Two resolutions passed (Source: KAIT)

CRAIGHEAD COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - The Craighead County Quorum Court passed two major resolutions Monday.

Craighead County is moving forward with plans to reduce the number of inmates booked into jail who have serious mental illnesses.

Justices of the Peace passed a resolution to support the "Stepping Up" initiative.

The program helps people suffering from mental health issues receive the appropriate care needed when entering the criminal justice system in Craighead County.

"Our county support for the Stepping Up initiative will allow us to partake in some resources that are offered by the National Association of Counties," said Tony Thomas, assistant to the county judge. "This will also express our commitment to being very proactive about dealing with mental health issues in our jail system."

The program will better identify adults entering jails with mental illnesses and use information to guide decision-making at the system, program, and case levels.

The Craighead County Quorum Court also approved passage of an inter-local agreement that will help every Craighead County town benefit from tickets issued by Arkansas State Police.

The issue started in 2014 when Arkansas State Police switched to issuing electronic tickets.

After that transition, the county started processing those tickets and subsequently received the funds associated with them.
Per the agreement passed Monday, Craighead County will keep 5% of the fine money and the rest goes to whichever town the ticket was written in.

Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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