WICHITA, Kan. (AP) A Sedgwick County corrections official says fewer youths are being locked up but that the number could rise if Kansas doesn’t restore funding for early intervention programs.
County corrections department director Mark Masterson spoke Monday to a group of Kansas lawmakers touring county facilities.
The Wichita Eagle reports the number of Sedgwick County youths sent to juvenile prisons and other out-of-home placements dropped to 145 in the 2012 fiscal year from 400 in 1999.
But Masterson fears that could change. He says the amount of state funding for prevention programs has dropped from an annual high of $6 million to $1 million this year.
Republican House member Jim Howell says he arranged the tour to get a better feel for how the county’s detention systems operate.