State Court Administrative Office announces nearly $14 million in grants to problem-solving courts

Michigan Leads Nation in Regionalizing Courts to Increase Access

LANSING, MI, September 11, 2015 – The State Court Administrative Office announced today that nearly $14 million has been awarded to 122 courts statewide to fund the operation of drug, DWI, mental health, and veterans treatment court programs.  Instead of costly incarceration, these problem-solving courts closely supervise offenders who are required to enroll in treatment programs and be drug tested regularly.  Extensive follow-up analysis shows that participants in these courts are far less likely to reoffend.

“These grant programs help problem-solving courts continue to do what they do best: save lives, save money, strengthen families, and build stronger communities,” said Chief Justice Robert P. Young, Jr. “But what is even more important is the leadership provided by judges who are passionate about making a difference and committed to investing the time and effort needed to turn lives around.”

Michigan was the first state court system to establish regionalized DWI courts and the second to establish regionalized mental health courts. Regionalized courts include two or more counties—or courts—crossing jurisdictional lines to provide treatment services to offenders under strict court supervision.  “By regionalizing these courts, we increase access and improve efficiency,” said Chief Justice Young.

The MSC Problem-Solving Court report, Solving Problems, Saving Lives, shows that in 2014:

—Two years after admission to any type of drug court, graduates were 56 percent less likely to be convicted of any new offense.

—Participants in sobriety courts and adult district drug courts were 75 percent less likely to be convicted of any new offense after two years.

—98 percent of mental health court graduates improved their mental health.

To find out more about the grant programs, visit courts and click on “Grants and Funding” in the menu down the left side. Michigan’s Problem-Solving Courts: Solving Problems, Saving Lives report can be found on the same page.

On the Grants and Funding Page, there is a list of courts receiving grants under “FY 2016 PSC grant recipients” at the very bottom of the lefthand menu. Kent, Ottawa, and Muskegon counties all received some type of grant.

The process of awarding the grants is highly competitive and funding is limited.  As a result, not every court who applied received a grant.

Chief Justice Young made the announcement at the annual meeting of the Citizens Research Council of Michigan.  In his remarks, he highlighted the Court’s work to improve service to the public by:

—improving outcomes by measuring court performance and adopting best practices;

—implementing technology to expand access; and,

—reengineering court processes to increase efficiency.

Details regarding the successful results of these initiatives to drive change and improve service to the public are available at