700 S. Hydraulic
Wichita, KS 67211
Community Corrections (CC) in
Kansas was established through enactment of K.S.A. 75-5290 by the 1978
Legislature. Patterned after the Minnesota Community Corrections Act, Community
Corrections was intended to provide alternatives to both incarceration and new
prison construction. Initially, CC was optional and counties were not required
to establish CC programs. However, with the passage of SB 49 in 1989, counties
not previously participating in CC were required to establish programs – whether
singly, in groups, or by contracting with existing programs. Adult offenders
were the primary population until the 1994 Legislature provided for statewide
expansion of juvenile services through CC. The responsibility for juvenile
offender supervision was transferred to the Juvenile Justice Authority (JJA) by
the 1997 Legislature.
The 2000 Kansas Legislature approved legislation that defined the target
population to be served by CC agencies. Probation violators must be assigned to
CC before being revoked and sent to prison unless the violation includes a new
conviction or the court makes a finding that public safety and/or the offender’s
welfare will not be served by doing so. The law further provides that CC
agencies may provide services to juveniles if the local advisory/governing board
Currently, thirty-one CC agencies provide services for adult offenders in all
105 Kansas counties. The following chronological record recounts the significant
events of Community Corrections in Sedgwick County.
Located in south-central Kansas, Sedgwick County is the second most populous
of all 105 Kansas counties. The United States Census (2009) estimates more than
490,000 residents of diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds reside within the
county. The City of Wichita is the largest city in Sedgwick County, as well as
the entire State of Kansas, with over 350,000 residents. The racial and ethnic
composition of the total population has steadily become more diverse and in 2009
was 73.8% White and 26.2% Minority (11.1% Hispanic, 9.8% African American, 4.2%
Asian, and 1.1% American Indian).
Sedgwick County began their process in May 1980 when the Community
Corrections Advisory Board was established by County Resolution Number 119-1980.
The Board’s focus was to identify service gaps in the existing system and
consider programs for Community Corrections funding. Early in the planning
process, it became clear that the primary focus for Community Corrections should
be the adult chargeback population. A controlled adult residential facility
became the major program goal for the adult population. Although Community
Corrections funding was also intended to serve the targeted juvenile chargeback
offenders, it was determined to be a lower priority as the juvenile system had
relatively more available community-based services. (Juvenile Community
Corrections services were not implemented until 1988.)
The Community Corrections Department officially began on July 1, 1983 and the
first client was ordered to the adult residential program on July 5, 1983.
The adult chargeback population included most 1st and 2nd time class D & E
felony offenders. The State’s fiscal award was based on an entitlement funding
formula which was subsequently reduced by the daily rate times the number of
days that Sedgwick County’s chargeback offenders spent in prison. The
department’s goal was to divert this targeted population to community
corrections’ programming in order to fully utilize the State entitlement funds.
To accomplish this, staff evaluators screened all felony cases set for
disposition in the 18th Judicial District (JD) and made formal recommendations
to the Court regarding those in the chargeback population.
Administrative and Non-Residential services were initially housed in the
Sedgwick County Courthouse, 525 N. Main, on the mezzanine level. Residential
programming was established in a 22 bed male facility at 1158 N. Waco.
Additional male beds, as well as the female beds, were provided through a
contract with the Halfway House for Adults, Inc., a private, nonprofit agency.
The residential program was a highly structured facility which emphasized
client supervision and accountability. The program also provided referrals and
intensive services in the areas of employment, substance abuse and psychological
counseling, education and family therapy. All residents were expected to
maintain full-time employment and/or school placement in the community.
Considerable emphasis was placed on budgeting of personal income, mastering
daily living skills, and preparing for the client’s eventual release to the
community. All clients were also expected to complete a minimum of 24 hours of
community service. Residential programming involved movement through levels
which generally averaged 140 days to complete.
Implementation of the 1983 plan included four major areas: Administration,
Intake/Evaluation, Adult Residential Services, and Non-Residential Services. The
Non-Residential services component was further broken down into four additional
sub-components: Non-Residential Supervision, Community Service Program, and two
contracted services including Sexual Abuse Treatment Program and Victim Offender
Mediation Services. The Community Service Program and the Non-Residential
Supervision components were implemented in October, 1983. The Community Service
Program was also utilized by the 18th JD court judges when a defendant was
ordered to perform community service work in lieu of jail time, payment of a
fine, or as a condition of probation. The majority of court-ordered participants
were DUI offenders who were ordered to perform 100 hours of community service in
lien of a minimum of 2 days in jail. Others were allowed to pay their fine
through community service.
During the early years of Community Corrections, the most common reason for
revocation was absconding from the residential facility. Other common revocation
reasons were persistent violations of program regulations and court-ordered
conditions of probation.
In 1985, the administrative and non-residential services were relocated to
604 N. Main (ECCO Plaza building). The residential center was also relocated to
a leased building at 309 N. Market where it operated as a 54 bed co-ed facility.
In 1985, the Residential Center was awarded a Certificate of Accreditation by
the American Correctional Association (ACA) for a prestigious 100% compliance
with all corrections standards for operation of an adult residential facility.
In 1986, Non-Residential Services moved to 1007 W. Douglas and a
three-quarter way house was created above the office space at 1007 ½ W. Douglas.
The ¾-way house provided semi-structured, supervised apartment living for up to
six lower-risk, male clients. Previously, because of a lack of finances or
appropriate residences, these clients were typically placed in the residential
facility. The program was designed to avoid unnecessary costs and crowding in
the residential facility. Rent payments from the clients in the ¾-way house
substantially supported the office space rental at 1007 W. Douglas.
Also in 1986, the Home Surveillance Program was initiated as a
super-intensive level of non-residential supervision, with a minimum of four
field contacts per week, including curfew checks. The Home Surveillance Program
was analogous to programs called “House Arrest” in other jurisdictions. It
provided another alternative to residential placement for appropriate clients.
Additionally, in-house substance abuse programs, AA and NA groups and a minority
support group were all initiated within the residential program.
Despite the fiscal impacts, the department responded to the needs of the
community’s stakeholders by reassessing the targeted offender criteria. In 1987,
the department broadened its acceptance criteria by screening any offender
referred directly by the sentencing judge. However, in 1988, SB 457 eliminated
the chargeback provision of the CC funding plan. Without financial penalty,
counties then had conditional access to their total community corrections
entitlement monies to provide locally-based community corrections programming.
CC juvenile programming began in 1988 with the addition of one ISO to
coordinate efforts with SRS regarding targeted juvenile offenders.
In May 1989, the residential facility again achieved 100% compliance with ACA
standards when it successfully completed the 3 year reaccreditation process.
Also in 1989, the County purchased the 905 N. Main building for the combined
Administrative and Field Services (previously referred to as non-residential)
activities and purchased the buildings at 207/209 N. Emporia for the expanded
residential center. The leased buildings at 1007 W. Douglas, 1007 ½ W. Douglas,
604 N. Main, and 309 N. Market were vacated.
Throughout the years, many special purpose grants have provided client
services in substance abuse treatment, GED preparation, etc. These sometimes
lasted a year or so before being defunded. For example, Bureau of Justice grant
monies were used for two certified drug and alcohol counselors who provided
post-treatment counseling for clients in the residential program. Also, Adult
Day Reporting was developed in 1993. Services included GED preparation,
contractual services for alcohol/drug evaluations, outpatient substance abuse
treatment groups, relapse prevention treatment, individual counseling with
family involvement, pre-treatment, and life skills groups with included job
readiness and employment maintenance.
In April 1992, electronic monitoring programming was added to the Adult
Intensive Supervision Program (AISP).
In 1995, the county departments of Youth Services and Community Corrections
were merged to create the current Department of Corrections.
1995 also brought an increased focus on the goal of promoting positive,
long-term behavioral change in all CC clients. Use of the client management
classification (CMC) tool assisted intensive supervision officers in identifying
and prioritizing offender needs and developing objective-based plans with the
offenders to aid and encourage their efforts to become law-abiding citizens.
A partnership with Social & Rehabilitative Services (SRS) in 1995 provided
intensive supervision services to youthful offenders departing state youth
For 12 years, the 76 bed co-ed residential facility operated at 207/209 N.
Emporia. However, once again, the residential programming need exceeded the
capacity of the physical plant. In 1999, on any given day there were 30
offenders in the community awaiting admission into the residential facility and
another 30 – 35 waiting in jail. A supplemental award from the Community
Corrections Violator Grant allowed the implementation of the Intensive Day
Intervention Program. (IDIP) The program’s focus was to assist in reducing the
number of condition violator prison placements by providing client centered
In 1998, the administration and funding of the juvenile community corrections
changed with the implementation of the Juvenile Justice Reform Act. As the
Sedgwick County Department of Corrections assumed supervision of the juvenile
offenders in the custody of the Juvenile Justice Authority, the JISP was moved
to the department’s new Juvenile Field Services Division. (JFS)
In 2001, the County sold the residential buildings on N. Emporia and
purchased the buildings at 622 E. Central and 623 E. Elm. The current 120 co-ed
bed capacity residential facility and the services center serve the adult
residential services programming needs. The new location provided many
improvements such as: more space for more classes and multiple activities to be
in session at one time; an all purpose room that provides space for visitation,
inside recreation and weekend faith services; a separate dorm building that
allowed staff to monitor the clients on one floor: and better security and
safety for both staff and clients.
In 2003, significant reductions were made due to funding cuts. The AISP
surveillance team, electronic monitoring (EMD) and employment assistance were
suspended or eliminated due to funding cuts.
In 2003, the Wichita Day Reporting Center (DRC) became available as a
resource for CC clients who might otherwise be sent to prison as a result of
probation violations. CC clients were served as space allowed at no cost to the
department or County.
In 2004, the Condition Violator grant was defunded. During 2005, SB 123 (the
new alternative drug sentencing law) was passed to address many of the same
client substance abuse treatment needs with a new target population.
In January 2005, as a result of work with the Criminal Justice Coordinating
Council (CJCC) and Sedgwick County government, CC received local funding for a
45-bed expansion of the residential center. The expansion helped to reduce the
waiting list of clients housed at the jail.
In 2006, as a result of the growth in staffing from the addition of SB 123
programming, CC Administrative Services relocated to the newly constructed
Juvenile Detention Facility at 700 S. Hydraulic. Adult Field Services offices
currently remain at 905 N. Main.
As a result of SB 14, a Risk Reduction Plan was developed and approved by the
Board of Sedgwick County Commissioners with implementation in November 2007.
The plan targeted two client groups that were at moderate to high risk to
reoffend and/or fail to succeed on probation and enter prison. The first was the
Risk Reduction Group assigned to ISP and scoring in the moderate to high-risk
category on the LSI-R assessment instrument. The second was the Reentry Group
and included clients returning to live in the community from the residential
center and the Labette Correctional Conservation Camp (LCCC). Specialized and
proven interventions were developed that reduced officer caseloads, enhanced
case planning and management, competency development, cognitive behavioral
skills training, reentry management and facilitated client transitions.
In January 2008, AISP re-organized offenders and classified them to specific
teams based on risk levels determined by the LSI-R. During implementation, ISOs
were trained in the use of evidence-based practices. Cognitive skills
programming with the clients began in May, 2008.
About this same time, another obstacle faced our local criminal justice
system with the closure of Labette Correctional Conservation Camp (LCCC).
With the influx of new funding to support SB 14 RRI plans, additional
resources for staff and clients were added. They included the Skills Developer
(to develop staff skills with Motivational Interviewing), a contracted COMCARE
mental health case manager, and Employment Specialist to assist clients obtain
and maintain employment. Client flex funds assisted clients with housing,
education, transportation, and treatment.
In November 2008, the Sedgwick County Drug Court Program was added to the
department. It was designed to serve 120 felony offenders who are most in need
of treatment services and whose addictions most negatively impact our community.
Most referrals come from AISP.
Sedgwick County experienced positive results with the transition to
evidence-based practices. In SFY 2008, client revocations were reduced by 29%.
In SFY 2009, client revocations of probation were reduced by 15.6% and
successful completions increased by 12% from the baseline year (SFY2006).
In 2009, the intake process was refined and a short version of the LSI-R was
used to determine initial team assignments in AISP. This form is referred to as
the LSI-R Short Version (LSI-R S/V). The LSI-R S/V does an effective job of
identifying a client’s risk level for assigning them to the appropriate
supervision team with 91% accuracy.
In November 2009, Adult Residential and AISP merged and became the Community
Corrections division. The consolidation of the Reentry and Residential teams
occurred in January 2010 due to budget constraints and a program evaluation by
Wichita State University (WSU). The program evaluation recommended that the
majority of the resources be targeted to the intensive supervision Level II and
III clients. As a result, a containment model of supervision for Level I clients
was adopted that included electronic monitoring, increased reporting, curfew,
the utilization of thinking reports and decisional balance exercises. Fewer
resources are also devoted to the Level IV clients.
The LSI-R was not designed to accurately measure the risk level of the sex
offender population. To address this area, staff have been trained on the
administration of the Static 99. In November 2010, the entire supervisory staff
and four ISOs were trained on the use of the Static 99, and the Acute and Stable
07 sex offender assessments.
In 2011 the capacity of the Adult Residential Facility was reduced from 120
to 65. The reason for this change was a decision by the County to stop funding
the bed expansion made in 2005. The target population was changed to serve
probation violators only, eliminating the sentencing option for direct placement
by the District Court.
Over the last nearly three decades, Sedgwick County has been progressive and
made great strides in providing adult community corrections programming.
However, this is an area where there is always more that needs to be done. There
continue to be too many technical probation violators, mentally ill, and
offenders with overwhelming needs. With the Risk Reduction Initiative and
evidence-based practices, we have seen what can be achieved when adequate
funding was available. There remains a real expectation that when given
appropriate fiscal resources, more offenders can be successful in the future.
Mission: To assure quality public services that provide for the present and future well-being of the citizens of Sedgwick County.
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