Wise Work Program Saves Over a Million Dollars

In a recent press release, Commonwealth Attorney for Wise and the City of Norton, Chuck Slemp announced the Wise Works Program, has saved local taxpayers a lot of money. The alternative sentencing program for low risk, non-violent offenders offers supervised community service, rather than jail time. The program allows qualifying offenders to serve a portion, or their full sentence by working a specified number of days at a designated court ordered job site.
Already effective at saving more than a million dollars of tax payer’s money, from reducing the costs of incarcerating offenders and spending less on labor costs for local communities and non-profit organizations. Created in 2017 at the request of Slemp, the program currently has fifty five offenders actively working in the community rather than sitting in the Duffield Regional Jail. The program requires random drug tests, and failure to follow all of the rules results in jail time as a Probation Violation charge.
Some of the community benefits for the county’s current work site programs are the Wise County Animal Shelter, Big Stone Gap Parks and Recreation, the Wise County Housing Authority, the Salvation Army, the Wise County School System, and the Cities of Appalachia, Big Stone Gape, Pound and St. Paul.


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