FIRST REGULAR SESSION
HOUSE BILL NO. 73
97TH GENERAL ASSEMBLY
INTRODUCED BY REPRESENTATIVES BARNES (Sponsor), DAVIS AND BURLISON (Co-sponsors).
0311H.01I D. ADAM CRUMBLISS, Chief Clerk
To repeal sections 478.001, 478.003, and 478.005, RSMo, and to enact in lieu thereof four new sections relating to drug courts.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:
Section A. Sections 478.001, 478.003, and 478.005, RSMo, are repealed and four new sections enacted in lieu thereof, to be known as sections 478.001, 478.003, 478.005, and 478.008, to read as follows:
478.001. 1. Drug courts may be established by any circuit court pursuant to sections 478.001 to 478.006 to provide an alternative for the judicial system to dispose of cases which stem from drug use. A drug court shall combine judicial supervision, drug testing and treatment of drug court participants. Except for good cause found by the court, a drug court making a referral for substance abuse treatment, when such program will receive state or federal funds in connection with such referral, shall refer the person only to a program which is certified by the department of mental health, unless no appropriate certified treatment program is located within the same county as the drug court. Upon successful completion of the treatment program, the charges, petition or penalty against a drug court participant may be dismissed, reduced or modified. Any fees received by a court from a defendant as payment for substance treatment programs shall not be considered court costs, charges or fines.
2. Under sections 478.001 to 478.007, a DWI docket may be established by a circuit court, or any county with a charter form of government and with more than six hundred thousand but fewer than seven hundred thousand inhabitants with a county municipal court established under section 66.010, to provide an alternative for the judicial system to dispose of cases which stem from driving while intoxicated. A drug court commissioner may serve as a commissioner in a DWI court or any other treatment or problem-solving court as designated by the drug court coordinating commission. [Drug court commissioners may serve in counties other than the county they are appointed upon agreement by the presiding judge of that circuit and assignment by the supreme court.]
478.003. In any judicial circuit of this state, a majority of the judges of the circuit court may designate a judge to hear cases arising in the circuit subject to the provisions of sections 478.001 to 478.007. In lieu thereof and subject to appropriations or other funds available for such purpose, a majority of the judges of the circuit court may appoint a person or persons to act as drug court commissioners. Each commissioner shall be appointed for a term of four years, but may be removed at any time by a majority of the judges of the circuit court. The qualifications and compensation of the commissioner shall be the same as that of an associate circuit judge. If the compensation of a commissioner appointed pursuant to this section is provided from other than state funds, the source of such fund shall pay to and reimburse the state for the actual costs of the salary and benefits of the commissioner. The commissioner shall have all the powers and duties of a circuit judge, except that any order, judgment or decree of the commissioner shall be confirmed or rejected by an associate circuit or circuit judge by order of record entered within the time the judge could set aside such order, judgment or decree had the same been made by the judge. If so confirmed, the order, judgment or decree shall have the same effect as if made by the judge on the date of its confirmation. Drug court commissioners may serve in counties other than the county in which they are appointed upon agreement by the presiding judge of the circuit of such county and assignment by the supreme court.
478.005. 1. Each circuit court shall establish conditions for referral of proceedings to the drug court. [The defendant in any criminal proceeding accepted by a drug court for disposition shall be a nonviolent person, as determined by the prosecuting attorney.] Any proceeding accepted by the drug court program for disposition shall be upon agreement of the parties.
2. Any statement made by a participant as part of participation in the drug court program, or any report made by the staff of the program, shall not be admissible as evidence against the participant in any criminal, juvenile or civil proceeding. Notwithstanding the foregoing, termination from the drug court program and the reasons for termination may be considered in sentencing or disposition.
3. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, drug court staff shall be provided with access to all records of any state or local government agency relevant to the treatment of any program participant. Upon general request, employees of all such agencies shall fully inform a drug court staff of all matters relevant to the treatment of the participant. All such records and reports and the contents thereof shall be treated as closed records and shall not be disclosed to any person outside of the drug court, and shall be maintained by the court in a confidential file not available to the public.
478.008. 1. Veterans treatment courts may be established by any circuit court, or combination of circuit courts, upon agreement of the presiding judges of such circuit courts under sections 478.001 to 478.008 to provide an alternative for the judicial system to dispose of cases which stem from substance abuse or mental illness of military veterans or current military personnel. A veterans treatment court shall combine judicial supervision, drug testing, and substance abuse and mental health treatment to participants who have served or are currently serving in the United States armed forces.
2. Except for good cause found by the court, a veterans treatment court shall make a referral for substance abuse or mental health treatment, or a combination of substance abuse and mental health treatment, through the Department of Defense health care, the Veterans Administration, or a community-based treatment program. Community-based programs utilized shall receive state or federal funds in connection with such referral and shall only refer the individual to a program which is certified by the Missouri department of mental health or the United States Veterans Administration, unless no appropriate certified treatment program is located within the same county as the veterans treatment court.
3. Upon successful completion of a veterans treatment court program, the charges, petition, or penalty against a veterans treatment court participant may be dismissed, reduced, or modified. This subsection shall not apply to any veterans treatment court participant who has previously had the charges, petition, or penalty dismissed, reduced, or modified under the provisions of this subsection. Any fees received by a court from a defendant as payment for substance abuse or mental health treatment programs shall not be considered court costs, charges, or fines.