Hon. Mary Muehlen Maring
Hon. Karen Braaten
Hon. Donovan Foughty
Hon. Steven McCullough
Hon. Thomas Merrick
Senator Larry Robinson
Hon. Todd Cresap
The Juvenile Drug Court Advisory Committee met through video conferencing, on December 6, 2013. The meeting was called to order by Justice Mary Muehlen Maring, Chair.
Judge McCullough moved to approve the minutes of September 6, 2013. Senator Larry Robinson seconded the motion. Motion carried.
The Devils Lake team members informed the committee that they would be leaving the meeting early. Justice Maring asked that the team reports be moved to the end of the meeting and that the committee would first consider new business because of the anticipated length of discussions on the old business.
Juvenile Drug Court Program Manual - Justice Maring asked that a subcommittee be appointed to work on the revisions of the Juvenile Drug Court Policy Manual and present them at the March 28, 2014, Juvenile Drug Court Advisory Committee meeting. She reminded the committee that all revisions must be approved by the Court before they are implemented. Justice Maring asked for volunteers for the subcommittee. Judge McCullough, Judge Braaten, Sean Anderson, Dawn Deitz, and Sara Ellenwood volunteered to sit on the subcommittee. Justice Maring asked that Judge McCullough organize the first meeting and appoint the chair.
Implementation Policy - Justice Maring directed the committee to consider the proposed Juvenile Drug Court Implementation Policy, which was drafted at the request of Chief Justice VandeWalle, The policy was provided to the committee at the September 2013, meeting. Justice Maring explained that since the last committee meeting, a provision was added regarding authority to suspend or close. John Grinsteiner suggested that under paragraph 14, language be added to cover the funds donated by the community. The committee agreed to change the third sentence of #14 to read: All funds to operate a drug court are received through the North Dakota Supreme Court and the North Dakota Association of Drug Court Professionals. Senator Robinson moved to approve the policy and enter it into the Juvenile Drug Court Program Manual. Judge Braaten seconded the motion. Motion carried. It will be incorporated into the Program Manual and the Juvenile Drug Court Program Manual subcommittee will include it in the new changes which will be submitted to the Supreme Court for approval.
Referral Form - Marilyn Moe explained to the committee about the Referral Form that was included in the meeting materials. The drug court teams sent their draft referral forms to Marilyn. A general form was then compiled listing the common criterion that at least two juvenile drug courts agreed on. The differences are listed at the end of the Referral Form. Judge McCullough said the Fargo Juvenile Drug Court had created a Referral Form and would monitor it for a year to ensure they are targeting the right juveniles. At that time, they will modify the form as needed. He asked if having a common form for all the courts would hinder his court from making changes to their form. Marilyn Moe stated that the form is a common form and each court will probably have some differences in their court referral form. She also stated she considers the Referral Form as a tool for juvenile court to screen the juveniles coming into Juvenile Drug Court. After discussion, the committee agreed to refer the Referral Form to the subcommittee for the Juvenile Drug Court Program Manual. The subcommittee will develop language for the Referral Form for the Juvenile Drug Court Program Manual and submit it back to the Juvenile Drug Court Advisory Committee by the next meeting.
Dismissal of Charges - John Grinsteiner asked the committee to consider the option of dismissing the charges of a juvenile drug court graduate immediately upon graduation. The current policy states that the referring charge is dismissed six months following graduation. John Grinsteiner explained that allowing dismissal of charges at graduation may encourage more juveniles to participate in the Juvenile Drug Court Program. Justice Maring asked for a vote on whether or not the committee is in favor of dismissing the current offense upon graduation. The JDC Advisory committee voted to change the policy allowing for dismissal of charges immediately following graduation. Justice Maring asked that the changes be added to the Juvenile Drug Court Program Manual. Valerie Potter asked when this change would go into effect. Justice Maring stated it will not go into effect until the North Dakota Supreme Court approves. Once it is included in the JDC Program Manual and presented to the Court and approved, Marilyn Moe will notify the juvenile drug court teams of the effective date.
Expungement of Records - John Grinsteiner asked the committee to consider giving the graduates the option of having their records expunged one year from graduation or termination from the program or attainment of age eighteen. Currently, under Sup. Ct. Admin. R. 19, a juvenile drug court participant’s records are to be retained for two years from graduation or termination from Juvenile Drug Court Program or attainment of age 18. Under Policy 403 a party may petition the court for early destruction of records. Comparing Policy 403 and Sup. Ct. Admin. R. 19 reveals conflict as to when the documents can be expunged. Justice Maring said that Sup. Ct. Admin. R. 19 does supercede Policy 403. John Grinsteiner asked the committee to consider shortening the time period to one year because it may provide another incentive for entry unto the program and also provide a juvenile who is trying to get into the military at age 18 an opportunity to clear that record. Justice Maring asked that the courts make it clear to the participants that even though the court records can be expunged, the records of other agencies may still exist. Judge Braaten reminded the committee that the graduates are responsible to contact the court for expungement of their records. After discussion, Justice Maring asked that the subcommittee for the JDC Program Manual review the language for expungement changes and make recommendations to the committee.
Treatment - Senator Larry Robinson briefed the committee on the Valley City Task Force that has been organized to address the concerns in the area of treatment for addiction and mental health issues. The task force is concerned about the placement, shortage of beds, and assessments that are being seen not only in Valley City but across the state. There are concerns of lack of new addiction counselors in the state and the reciprocity issues through the State Examiners for Addiction Counselors. Justice Maring suggested that the committee gather information, statistics, and testimonies for the next legislative session. Senator Robinson asked that the committee prepare for the Interim Committees and meet with the Governor before the budgets are set this fall. John Grinsteiner asked that the adult drug courts be invited to the next JDC Advisory meeting to prepare. Marilyn Moe will invite the adult drug court judges to the next meeting. Marilyn Moe asked Senator Robinson if he has seen a final report in regards to the North Dakota Human Service Center’s town meetings. Marilyn Moe will contact Alex Schweitzer to get a copy of the report when it is available.
The Devils Lake Drug Court team members left the meeting at this point.
Ashley Beall reported for the Minot Drug Court Team. Minot currently has three juveniles in the Juvenile Drug Court Program. There were no terminations and one graduation since the last reporting period.
The drug court team members reviewed and updated the path applications and created a new Referral Form. Marilyn Carlson, who provides the social skills program for the Minot Juvenile Drug Court participants, has resigned. Lisa Wheeler will take over the social skills program.
The participants and team members worked at the Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast where they handed out poppies to the public at the Veteran’s Day Service in November. The participants worked at the Downtown Christmas Holiday Tree Lighting roasting marshmallows for those in attendance.
Judge McCullough reported for the Fargo Team. Currently there are nine participants in juvenile drug court. There was one graduation during this reporting period.
The participants were required to volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House, serve dinner at the Salvation Army, and they will be required to ring bells for the Salvation Army. The participants continue to attend Life Management Class and Girl’s Group.
Aleesha Ward has been hired as the new coordinator for the Fargo drug court team. Nicole Leitner will take over probation for the juvenile drug court in the absence of Nicole Burkhartsmeier.
The team completed an online survey on the Juvenile Drug Courts: 16 Strategies. The team will go over the results at their next administrative meeting.
Sherrice Roness reported for the Bismarck Team. Currently there are five participants in the Juvenile Drug Court Program. There were no terminations or graduations during this reporting period.
The participants and team members worked at the Red Ribbon Carnival and Applefest. The participants worked on various projects through the Life Skills Program with Carrie’s Kids. They prepared and served meals for families, helped set up for the Christmas Shoppe, and prepared food and projects for the Boys and Girls Club.
Elise Motter, treatment provider from the West Central Human Service Center, has resigned. Kathy Sather from the center will replace her.
Shawn Peterson reported for the Grand Forks Team. Currently there are six participants. One participant graduated , one participant was suspended, and one participant was terminated since the last reporting period.
In September, the team members and participants set up bocce ball courts for the Special Olympics Tournament. In October, some of the participants were involved in the annual Walk for Recovery. On Veteran’s Day, some participants and staff honored the veterans in the community by serving them lunch along with the local Ladies Auxiliary. Participants also served a Thanksgiving meal to the needy in Grand Forks at the Salvation Army.
Kristi Wieland reported for the Stutsman - Barnes County Team. The juvenile drug court started operation on October 9. Currently there are three participants. Two participants are from Jamestown and one participant is from Valley City. Judge Merrick will hold the juvenile drug sessions in Jamestown. Valley City participants and team members will attend through video conferencing. On the first Wednesday of each month, Judge Merrick will travel to Valley City to hold the court session and Jamestown participants and team members will attend through video conferencing. Lee Grossman, State’s Attorney, informed the court that he will be resigning his position as State’s Attorney and will go into private practice. Carl Martineck, Assistant State’s Attorney, will take over for Lee Grossman. The Valley City and Jamestown community has been very supportive of the juvenile drug court and has provided the court with incentives. Brian Washburn was interviewed by the Jamestown Sun and team members were interviewed by the Sun and Valley City Times Record. The County Extension Office will provide a Life Skills Program for the participants.
Justice Maring congratulated the Stutsman - Barnes County Juvenile Drug Court team members for starting a video conferencing court.
Devils Lake Team Report - Justice Maring asked the Devils Lake team to send their report to Marilyn Moe so she can record it in the minutes.
Devils Lake Juvenile Drug Court currently has six participants. There were no graduations or terminations during this reporting period.
The team members met with trackers through Lutheran Social Services and their supervisor to review the juvenile drug court policies and procedures and to address any concerns or questions. Since it proved helpful, the team and Lutheran Social Services trackers will meet yearly. Parents have been joining staffing for the last 15 minutes each week to talk about their child and to get their opinion on the program. Judge Foughty has implemented asking youth random questions about the drug court program which are found in their handbook. This came after several youth were not able to articulate areas of the program to their treatment providers. If the youth answers correctly they receive an award. Five of the team members attended the Upper Midwest Drug Court Conference in Bismarck in October. The team is exploring new ways to utilize independent living programs and programs to help with parenting beyond what intensive in-home therapy offers.
Justice Maring took this time to thank all the team members and committee members for their hard work and to wish them the best in future. This is Justice Maring’s last Juvenile Drug Court Advisory Committee meeting. The committee thanked her for her years of service. Justice Maring is retiring from the North Dakota Supreme Court on December 31, 2013.
Next meeting date: March 28, 2014.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.