TRENTON – A bill sponsored by Senators Raymond J. Lesniak and Nicholas P. Scutari which expands eligibility for the State’s drug court substance abuse treatment program and creates a phased-in pilot program in which any offender who’s eligible would be automatically enrolled in drug court was signed into law today.
“Drug Court saved the life of one of the intruders who broke into my home and robbed me in the middle of the night three years ago, and the program made our community safer by giving him an opportunity to kick his drug habit and lead a productive, crime free life,” said Senator Lesniak, D-Union. “Unfortunately, his partner in crime was not eligible to receive the intensive treatment for his drug addiction provided by our drug courts because of prior offenses. The time that he served in jail was more costly and less likely to aid his recovery or lessen his likelihood of committing another crime. This law expands access to the life-saving, cost-saving and crime-preventing opportunities provided by our drug courts to thousands of criminal offenders struggling with drug addiction. Our communities will be safer and taxpayer costs will be saved as our prison population is reduced as a result.”