|Sen. Julianne Ortman, left, introduced the bill. Hennepin County Judge Jay Quam testified in favor. |
Two bills designed to reduce the amount of time mentally ill offenders spend in jail awaiting treatment passed a Senate committee last week, and will now head to the floor.
One of the bills would mandate that the Department of Human Services transfer the offender out of jail within 48 hours of a judge issuing a civil commitment order; the other would streamline the path to commitment, combining the criminal and civil processes.
"Members, we set the policy," said bill author Sen. Julianne Ortman, R-Chanhassen, at Thursday's hearing. "It's not right for folks that are innocent to be sitting in our jail waiting for treatment and waiting through processes that I think are unnecessarily burdensome."
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