Winona County may institute a new unit designed to help keep non-violent, low risk offenders out of jail while they await court appearances.
It's called a Community Stabilization Integration program that would intervene in lesser criminal cases and provide pre-trial services for clients that would normally be held in jail without being convicted of a crime.
District Judge Nancy Buytendorp told the Winona County Board of Commissioners the program would be a huge step forward and place all programs under one unit. She said currently 75% of jail inmates have not yet been convicted of a crime.
It would also save the county money.
Currently the county pays $55 a day to house some inmates in other county jails.
County Administrator Duane Hebert Said before the commissioners take action, the next step would be the creation of a program, plus finding a program manager and a pre-trial coordinator.
No added county dollars would be needed because the funds are included in the Community Services Department budget.....