Newton courts receive grant funding

COVINGTON — The Alcovy Judicial Circuit is set to receive a variety of grants that will help improve the operations of the Adult Drug Court and Resource Court.

The Newton County Board of Commissioners agreed to accept three grants totaling $6,300 from the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council Accountability Courts State of Georgia grants program during Tuesday’s meeting.

The Adult Drug Court grant for $3,800 is a mini technology grant that will help improve some computer needs at the court. Additional funding of $1,250 will also be given to the Adult Drug Court to help fund the operations that help offenders with drug charges or mental health issues.

The final grant accepted by the BOC at Tuesday’s meeting was in the amount of $1,250 for the Resource Court.

Resource Court is a collaborative court designed to address the needs of individuals diagnosed with a severe and persistent mental illness who have committed a crime. The court also provides treatment to court participants in conjunction with community supervision by the Newton County Sheriff’s Office and probation officers and drug testing.

The BOC also approved hiring of a construction manager for the Newton County Judicial Center expansion project. In November, commissioners moved up the project on their to-do list for 2011 special purpose local option sales tax funds. Initially, the project was not slated to begin until the end of the six-year 2011 SPLOST, but Superior Court judges appealed to the Board of Commissioners in August to expedite the project because the expansion is needed sooner.

It was said the project should be completed in 18 to 24 months once construction begins.