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Joint Legislative Committee on Criminal Justice Funding and Strategies
“Public safety is our first priority. It is government’s primary responsibility. ”
MADISON - Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen today appeared and offered testimony before the Joint Legislative Committee on Criminal Justice Funding and Strategies at their invitation. As a part of his testimony, Attorney General Van Hollen highlighted:
I believe in limited government, but effective government. Limited government does not mean government doing a little bit less of each of the things that it has grown to do. It means doing the right things and doing them well, as I believe we do at the Department of Justice. It means prioritizing responsibilities according to government’s essential functions.
This is why I believe that public safety has the first claim on the public treasury. It is government’s primary responsibility. The criminal justice system and public safety is a common, public good. It benefits each and every citizen of the state of Wisconsin.
So while this Committee examines ways to make funding of the criminal justice system sustainable, it is important for policymakers to bear in mind that this very endeavor might indicate a past failure to prioritize first principles. If the criminal justice system is not adequately funded, we should not be struggling with the questions of how to adequately fund the criminal justice system; rather, we should be struggling with the questions of how-or whether-to fund other government programs.
Attorney General Van Hollen’s prepared testimony may be viewed at: