Texas Lawmakers Discuss Juvenile Justice System - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Texas Lawmakers Discuss Juvenile Justice System

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Texas lawmakers are to discuss ways of reducing the number of young people in the state's juvenile justice system through early intervention programs and by providing greater access to mental health services.

Members of the House Committee on Corrections may also offer recommendations on certifying juveniles as adults during their Tuesday meeting in Austin.

Texas' troubled youth corrections system has undergone major reforms since neglect and sexual abuse allegations surfaced several years ago.

The Legislature voted in 2011 to create the new Texas Juvenile Justice Department by merging the Texas Youth and Juvenile Probation commissions.

The move was meant to shift more offenders to community-based supervision and treatment programs. It also was supposed to save the state about $3.3 billion.

Committee members will hear testimony on the merger's progress.

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