PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - Criminal justice reform is to take center stage as South Dakota's 2013 legislative session picks up the pace.
Lawmakers descended on Pierre last week to kick off the annual session.
A first committee hearing will be Tuesday on a plan to cut prison costs and improve the rehabilitation of criminal offenders by treating more of those convicted of nonviolent crimes outside prison walls.
The Legislature's Joint Appropriations Committee will get a briefing on the plan, including projected costs for the changes in probation, parole and special courts that treat offenders with drug and alcohol problems.
A formal hearing on the bill will be held sometime later in the Senate State Affairs Committee, but the Appropriations Committee has to deal with the plan's budget implications.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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