Viewpoint: Furlough for Prosecutors - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Viewpoint: Furlough for Prosecutors

The criminals won't take a furlough…but prosecutors may have to.  That is one of the proposals for trimming expenses in the State Budget.  There is talk of investigators and assistant D.A.'s  being forced to take large amounts of time off in order to cut costs in order to shore up the state's $700-million budget shortfall.  We agree that the sacrifices have to be spread around…but after talking to some of the area District Attorneys and investigators this could greatly hinder both solving crimes and bringing those indicted of crimes to justice.  As we have said before…public safety has to come first.  Nothing else good can happen if we shackle our law enforcement establishment to the point that crime rates escalate…criminals go unpunished…due process is thwarted and people no longer feel safe.  Sure there are many other areas that need due diligence before getting cut…and there may even be some areas in the judiciary that need to be looked at closely.  We know the state is in a bind.  But few things trump efficient and speedy law and order.  Whether or not it will pass the House, we don't know…but the Senate voted to give the Governor discretion in cutting up to 10 percent of the state's budget.  Regardless of who does the cutting…we hope they will study this issue long and hard before doing possible irreparable damage to the crime fighting forces in Mississippi.  I'm Jim Cameron…that's today's Viewpoint.  Let us hear what is on your mind.


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