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McLennan County Veterans Treatment Court - Enhancement Grant

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $750,000)

Project Abstract – Category 2 Enhancement: Veterans Treatment Courts


McLennan County Veterans Treatment Court (MCVTC) is voluntary, pre and post-adjudication court-monitored treatment for adults unable to maintain sobriety addressing substance abuse and/or mental health. MCVTC’s 12-month minimum program has four phases, each intended to be  90 days minimum with average length of program participation lasting 12-18 months with no maximum participation length.  MCVTC occurs at McLennan County Courthouse, 501 Washington Ave., Waco, Texas 76701. MCTVC begins at 12pm on 1st and 3rd Wednesdays monthly. Hon. Gary Coley presides, Amy Lowrey, Court Coordinator: 254-759-7557; [email protected]; [email protected].


$750,000 is requested for 48-month grant for 50 participants to receive enhancement services in McLennan County. MCVTC is not requesting or leveraging any other federal funding sources and has received a Drug Court grant from OJP for another program. Target population: Veterans age 18+ charged with misdemeanor or felony offenses.  Acceptable offenses include substance use, assault, and case-by-case basis other offenses related to military service. Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) provided through local Methadone Program; outpatient opioid treatment available at VA and the Community Health Center; detox services available through community-based detox programs as needed. Mutual aid recovery groups are encouraged and participants engage in cognitive re-training through Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT), Seeking Safety, Strength at Home (BIPP), anger management, and PTSD treatments as appropriate.


MCVTC uses research from Justice for Vets, NADCP, Council of State Governments Justice Center, literature regarding evidenced-based practices, Ten Key Components of Drug Court, and Ten Essential Elements of a Mental Health Court as outlined by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. American Psychological Association’s Presidential Task Force identifies promoting effective practice and enhancing public health through implementing and utilizing empirically supported principles of psychological assessment, case formation, and therapeutic relationships. Using the sequential intercept model, MCVTC transforms fragmented systems, identifies local resources and gaps, develops intervention strategies utilizing National Association of Drug Court Professionals Best Practice Standards to intertwine methodologies and practices.    


Participants screen for appropriateness and those with current or past OUD are provided Overdose Prevention Education on all substances and upon release from jail are provided Naloxone.  MCVTC educates participants on a continuous basis about OUD. Team does not shame individuals who return to usage; rather employs trauma informed recovery-oriented systems of care with participant and works to determine what precipitated usage and identify different recovery supports. Treatment is utilized to assist participant in reaching long term recovery goals.

Date Created: September 30, 2022