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Opinion: Focus on Smart Justice Reforms – The Panama City News Herald

Adjusted for population, Florida has the fifth highest violent crime rate in the United States. Currently, Florida’s corrections budget is $214 million; that does not include money spent on the juvenile justice system. Currently, there are several pieces of legislation in the Florida House and the Florida Senate that could reform the state’s justice system. In this editorial, The Panama City News Herald argues in favor of a 27-member task force that will make recommendations on sentencing laws and overhauls to save taxpayer money. Some other key measures include bills that reform the use of juvenile civil citations. The Panama City News Herald also calls on Governor Rick Scott to follow through on his pledge to add over $20 million to the budget for mental health services. With justice reform being a main priority of the Florida Senate president, there should currently be enough encourage to make these changes happen to lower costs and lower crime in Florida. Read more.