The goal of the Graduated Sanctions Program is to prevent further progression of lesser offending youth into the juvenile justice system.

MIAMI — Ottawa County Commissioners approved a matching grants request for and received an update on the Ottawa County Graduated Sanctions program during their meeting Monday morning.

The Graduated Sanctions Program is a community-based initiative designed to provide accountability and to facilitate services for non-compliant youth within the State of Oklahoma. The goal of the program is to prevent further progression of lesser offending youth into the juvenile justice system.

“We have not had as many 16- and 17-year olds for the last three or four years, but we had more this year than in the past,” said Program Director Elaine Clugston. “The thing that is interesting too are the drug and paraphernalia issues were not near as many as in the past.

“How we explain that, I don’t know. The state grant is telling us that juvenile crime in the state of Oklahoma is down. We would like to say it’s because of the diversion program."

Of the 42 offenses listed, four were for possession of CDS and four were for paraphernalia.

Assistant district attorney Rogers Hughes had a possible reason for the decline.

“I can’t necessarily answer why it’s down in the state as a whole, I know in our county, particularly in the last three or four years, our office has taken a much more aggressive stance on drug offenses.”

Other offenses listed were Assault & Battery, two; Arson I, two; Public Intoxication, four; Shoplifting, nine; Grand Larceny, two; Malicious Injury to Property, eight; Burglary, three; Petit Larceny, one; Truancy, one; Threatening Violence, one, and Runaway, one.

The ages of juveniles served were 11 years of age, one; 13 years old, seven; 14 years old, three; 15 years old, 14; 16 years old, four, and 17 years old, six.

Clugston’s report indicated that 35 families were served during the fiscal year and that 88 percent of those successfully completed the program.

Nineteen of the families were in the Miami School District, 13 involved families residing in the county’s school districts and three were homeschooled.

“We are a good secret,” Clugston said.

In other action, commissioners:

• approved a security agreement with Praetorian Protective Services Inc. for the county storage building (the old Boys and Girls Club of Ottawa County) at 114 1st SE.

• approved a contract for juvenile detention services at the Northwestern Oklahoma Regional Detention Center at Woodward between the Eastern Oklahoma Youth Services and the commissioners;

• approved Resolution 2017-17 executing the authorization of participation in the Association of County Commissioners of Oklahoma Self-Insured Group (ACCO-SIG) property-liability coverage including payment options for Ottawa County for Fiscal Year 207-2018,

• approved Resolution 2017-18 authorizing the county election board to direct the county treasurer to reimburse personal services, part-time help, travel or maintenance and operating general fund account as stated by Title 62, Section 335 of the Oklahoma Statutes,

• approved appraisal waiver-offer packets to acquire right of way from John R. Connelly and James Beck, trustee of the Beck Family Trust, for bridge and approach improvement projects, and

• approved an engagement letter from Turner and Associates PLC,

No action was taken on two items, and another was tabled.