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Overton Commission Approves Victim Assistance Assessment Fee

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Overton Commission Approves Victim Assistance Assessment Fee

Overton County Commission voted Monday night to start collecting a $45 Victim’s Assistance Assessment fee from every person convicted of a crime.

Upper Cumberland Family Justice Center Board Chair Bryant Dunaway said that the money would be split with $3 going to the county clerk for processing, and the rest going to an organization that helps victims.

“So it’s kind of flow-through money,” Dunaway said. “The people who are convicted of crimes, not people who are found not guilty, not cases where the case is dismissed, but the ones that are convicted. And that money would help to provide the services to crime victims.”

Dunaway said the Putnam County Commission voted to approve such a fee in 2015. Dunaway said that fees will cost the county nothing and that the money will go to help victims of crime. The fee will go into effect on the first of next month.

Family Justice Center Director Amy Stockwell said that the new Overton County location served some 70 people last quarter.

Dunaway said that the Upper Cumberland Family Justice Center first opened seven years ago in Putnam County to help victims of domestic abuse. He said that they expanded to a satellite location in Livingston when they realized that it wasn’t feasible to have one location for the whole area.

“The idea is to kind of have a one-stop-shop for domestic violence victims to go to,” Dunaway said. “Before such an entity existed, a domestic violence victim had to go to so many different places in a confusing system to seek out services, to seek out orders of protection.”

According to the Victims Assistance Assessment, the projected Overton County collection is estimated between $10,000 and $12,000.


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