Compromise will reduce cut to China Spring and Aurora Pines youth camps

The entrance to China Spring Youth Camp located south of Gardnerville in the Pinenut Mountains.

The entrance to China Spring Youth Camp located south of Gardnerville in the Pinenut Mountains. Photo by Kurt Hildebrand.

 

Lawmakers on Friday accepted a compromise plan fund the China Spring and Aurora Pines youth camps in Douglas County.

Gov. Steve Sisolak had proposed a 71 percent reduction in state funding for the camp that has long been supported by the state.

Camp officials said stripping $2.4 million out of their budget in 2022 would be devastating.

But the governor’s office and some lawmakers have long argued that the camp, which provides correctional services to mid-level juvenile offenders doesn’t get enough support from the counties. The operation provides services to 16 counties.

The only other camp is Spring Mountain in Clark County that is largely supported by local funding.

The compromise worked out by Assemblywoman Danielle Monroe-Moreno of Las Vegas and Sen. Julia Ratti of Sparks would spread the cuts over the next biennium to provide what they described as a “glide path” rather than a financial cliff.

It would impose a 23.5 percent cut in fiscal 2022 and a 47 percent cut in 2023. That translates to a reduction from $1.7 million in the current year to $1.19 by the end of the biennium.

The other part of the deal is that the counties commit to working through the biennium to develop a plan that includes potential programming changes at the camp and a long-range funding plan that includes a formula laying out county funding responsibilities.

That plan must include efforts recover and expand Medicaid funding for the camp.

It must also take into consideration the situation of very small counties that make minimal use of the camp and have very limited budgets.

Each of the 16 counties that use the camp and the state would have oversight and a say in the operation and funding of the camp.

The deal asks that the state consider access to federal or one-shot funding to offset the cuts in the short term.

Comments

spunx903 1 month, 2 weeks ago

Charge each county a flat rate per inmate. This will drive counties with more offenders to spend more money & time on keeping kids OUT of the facilities; & perhaps reduce crime in their areas.

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