Sacramento California
Reno/Northern Nevada

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Managing The Alcohol Offender


For More Information

Contact Marion Straw

(775) 323-8273


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Dr. Mark Rosekind Ph.D with The National Transportation Board

Mark Rosekind PH.D National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)



Dr. Mark Rosekind Ph.D


The National Transportation Board


In 1988 a school bus full of children coming back from a field trip was hit by a drunk driver going the wrong way on the interstate. There were a total of sixty-seven passengers on board. Twenty-seven people lost their lives, twenty-four of which were children. Dr. Rosekind stated, " There were many serious injuries, however the fire that ensued was the most horrific part of the crash. Among the survivors many suffered disfiguring burns." The drivers BAC level was .28

It was a pleasure to meet Dr. Mark Rosekind with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). He is passionate about his work and saving lives. He says it is their job to go out and investigate the probable cause of all modes of transportation accidents and based on what they learn give their safety recommendations so it doesn't happen again. They do not write regulations or enforce them. They have an 82% acceptance rate on their recommendations. (He was on scene at the Reno National Air Races Crash)


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1988 School Bus

Crash Impact Video

The 1988 school bus crash remains to date the worst drunk driving incident in American history. Dr. Rosekind says "Unfortunately it is our job to show up when something bad has happened. Lives are lost, people are injured and property destroyed. The worse part for us is to come to a scene of an accident only to find out we have given ten recommendations that could have prevented the lives lost in that particular accident. But sometimes it takes years before our recommendations take effect." 
Twenty-five years after the accident a staggering 300,000 people have lost their lives to drunk drivers. Which is nearly the entire population of the cities of Reno and Sparks combined. (2010 U.S. Census Bureau)  In 2011- 173,000 people were injured in drunk driving accidents and 27,000 of those people had debilitating and life altering injuries. Also in 2011 lives lost in alcohol impaired driving is five times that of all other modes of transportation. Dr. Rosekind states "this is the scope of the tragedy that is happening in our nation today."

There is good news. The NTSB has come up with a roadmap for impaired driving and it is called Reaching Zero. He said at the two-day forum when they came up with that title there was a lot of debate about the ZERO part. Are we ever going to get there? According to Rosekind and the NTSB that has to be the goal. Even if we don't get to zero, every life saved on our way to that is still a success.


For more information please visit





Sparks Justice Court Administrator

who was selected by the (NACE) as it's







Sept 9th-12th, 2013


Sparks, Nugget

Contact Marion Straw 


National Association of Counties
Adopted July 15, 2012



Issue: Address jail overcrowding and jail costs for Pre-Trial defendants.
Proposed Policy: NACo supports the use of continuous alcohol monitoring with house arrest as an effective alternative to incarceration for pre-trial defendants.
Background: With significant decline in reported crime rates, shrinking budgets, growing jail populations and a stagnant economy, counties across the nation are facing difficult decisions on how to more effectively manage criminal justice costs while preserving public safety. "Jails primarily house pretrial defendants. According to national estimates, two-thirds of jail inmates are in pretrial status"1 Local jail populations are mostly comprised of non-violent offenders who are unable to meet bail or bond requirements.
Consequently courts, judges and other stakeholders are seeking solutions that will help ease jail overcrowding while maintaining public safety. By using continuous alcohol monitoring with house arrest during the pre-trial phase, courts can allow less dangerous alcohol offenders safely back into the community. Nonviolent offender can be safely supervised in the community when they are being continuously monitored for alcohol (and also confined to their homes during critical hours of the day, if needed). Continuous alcohol monitoring also helps offenders achieve sustained sobriety which is much more effective in producing short and long-term behavioral change.
With regard to pre-trial supervision, continuous alcohol monitoring:
  • Provides counties with a cost-effective alternative to incarceration for those jail prisoners who may not pose a threat to the community;
  • Allows offenders to earn jail credit for time served under continuous alcohol monitoring;
  • Provides judges and prosecutors with comprehensive, fact based data that will enable more informed bail decisions;
  • Provides a vehicle to help offenders safely re-enter the community;
  • Provides an option to the courts for those alcohol offenders who would be ordered back to jail on technical violations;
  • Protects public safety at little to no cost to taxpayers, since offenders pay their own supervision / monitoring fees; and
  • Allows offenders to hold jobs, support their families, and contribute positively to the community while abstaining from alcohol.

Fiscal/Urban/Rural Impact: Urban and rural counties will benefit equally by using continuous alcohol monitoring for non-violent alcohol offenders. On average continuous alcohol monitoring devices cost $12/day as compared to jail at $50-75/day. Offenders who are released on continuous alcohol monitoring devices are responsible for the daily cost of monitoring and/or supervision.


Sponsor: Commissioner Judy Shiprack, Multnomah County, OR.


1 United States. Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Assistance. National Association of Counties. Pretrial Justice Institute. (2009). Jail Population Management: Elected County Officials' Guide to Pretrial Services. P.23 

If you have someone you think should be acknowledged or spotlighted in our newsletter please contact:
Marion Straw 775-323-8273