Starke County Community Corrections Director, Robert Hinojosa, presented his annual calendar year report to the Starke County Commissioners this week.
Hinojosa talked about the three components of Community Corrections. Those are Home Detention, Community Service, and the Community Transition Program. He talked about the Community Transition Program.
“The offenders who have been sentenced to the Department of Corrections from Starke County all get released back with little or no services available to them so what we’ve chosen to do is provide services in the last 30 to 60 days of their sentence to transition them back,” explained Hinojosa. “We know that if they are unable to access services, they will fail, they will get rearrested, they’ll go back to the Department of Corrections and it’ll be a never ending cycle.”
Of importance to the Commissioners was the number of participants in the programs, who by their participation in Community Corrections, were kept out of the Starke County Jail.
“There were 582. Now, some of our home detention program participants might have ended up in the county jail and some might have ended up in the Department of Corrections. It’s really hard to tell what they’ve done, take look at the number of days that were diverted from incarceration. In July, there 1,048 days. That’s a significant number of bed days, whether it’s in the Department of Corrections or jail, that didn’t refer people to and where people didn’t serve their time.”
With those 582 participants, 14,595 days of incarceration time were diverted.
Community Corrections is funded by a number of sources. Hinojosa pointed out that they have come up with sources besides grant funds.
“Two years ago, 100% of our revenue was a grant. Now, it’s less than 50%. We now collect home detention fees and community service fees. So I’d say about 47% of our revenue now comes from the grant.”
Home Detention accounts for $165,626 of the revenue stream, and the grant is for $183,718. Hinojosa said expenses run approximately $25,000 a month.