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Lueck bill to assist Aitkin County Corrections eases through House

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Lueck bill to assist Aitkin County Corrections eases through House

ST. PAUL – The House on Thursday overwhelmingly passed legislation Rep. Dale Lueck, R-Aitkin, authored to allow smaller Minnesota counties to continue to participate in the state's Community Correction Act (CCA) program.

Current law does not allow a county with a population of less than 30,000 to establish their own county-based CCA program. Both Crow Wing and Morrison counties will withdraw from Central Minnesota Community Corrections organization which also included Aitkin County as of June 30. With a population of approximately 16,000, existing law makes Aitkin County ineligible to continue to participate in the CCA program.

Lueck's bill (H.F. 2870) grandfathers in counties already participating in a CCA program, even if a CCA joint powers organization dissolves. That provision will allow Aitkin County probation officers to continue under the Community Corrections Act in the same manner as their colleagues in Morrison and Crow Wing will do after those counties transition to their own CCA independent program effective June 30.

"We still have to move this bill through the Senate and onto the governor’s desk, but today we took a major step forward in eliminating an unnecessary disruption to a very professional and effective group of probation officers currently delivering corrections services in Aitkin County," Lueck said. "I am fully confident Aitkin County can continue to operate an excellent corrections program as a stand-alone CCA county, despite our smaller county population.”

The bill passed the House 125-2 with broad bipartisan support and now goes to the Senate for consideration before it can be presented to Gov. Mark Dayton for his action.

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