- To provide appropriate and effective supervision of offenders in the community.
- To provide for the confinement, care, control and treatment of offenders sentenced to or confined in community correction centers in an adequate, safe and secure environment.
- To develop and implement sanctions, programs and services needed to function within the scope of the mission.
- To improve staff recruiting, retention and training efforts.
“To enhance public safety by enforcing state laws and court mandates through community partnerships and evidence-based programs that are cost efficient and hold offenders accountable while engaging them in opportunities to become law-abiding, productive citizens.”
“We place our priority on public safety while providing opportunities for positive change.”
During the 2019 legislative session, the Arkansas General Assembly passed an Act to transform state government. Under Governor Asa Hutchinson’s leadership, the 42 state agencies that are part of the executive branch of government were consolidated into 15 departments and the ACC became a part of the Arkansas Department of Corrections. Effective July 1, 2019, the Arkansas Department of Corrections consists of the following entities:
- The Division of Correction (formerly the Arkansas Department of Correction); The Division of Community Correction (formerly Arkansas Department of Community Correction); The Corrections School System; The Office of the Criminal Detention Facility Review Coordinator; along with the Administrative functions of the Criminal Detention Facility Review Committees; Administrative functions of the Parole Board; Administrative functions of the Arkansas Sentencing Commission; and Administrative functions of the State Council for the Interstate Commission for Adult Offender Supervision.
The consolidation of administrative functions will allow each entity to focus on their same missions while the administrative services areas continue to support the front line staff carrying out our various missions.
The Department of Community Correction became known as Arkansas Community Correction (ACC).
On April 4, 2008, a ground breaking ceremony was held at the Northeast Arkansas Community Correction Center for the new chapel that was being built.
On April 15, 2008, Northwest Arkansas Community Correction Center opened in Fayetteville.
On May 1, 2008, the new chapel opened at the Southwest Arkansas Community Correction Center.
New federal grants were received for the continuation of the Special Needs Program at SEACCC and the Women and Children Transitional Living and Reunification Program, to provide sex offender training, to purchase curriculum for day reporting centers and for a part-time welding instructor for SEACCC and SWACCC.
In September, staff from Area 6 helped put on the 1st Annual Celebrate Recovery Day in Conway.
New federal grants were received for the continuation of the Special Needs Program at SEACCC and the Women and Children Transitional Living and Reunification Program, to provide sex offender training and to purchase curriculum for day reporting centers.
All 4 Community Correction Centers, Omega Supervision Sanction Center, DCC Central Office and DCC Probation/Parole Services received full accreditation from the American Correctional Association.
Three new drug courts were added in Harrison, Camden and Clarksville.
New federal grants were received for the continuation of the Special Needs Program and the Restaurant Orientation/Sanitation and Safety class at SEACCC and to provide a part-time welding instructor at SEACCC and SWACCC.
DCC received the American Correctional Association Eagle Award to “recognize the significant accomplishment of agencies accrediting every component within their area of responsibility which symbolizes a commitment to excellence.”
SEACCC established a quilting program to support the Arkansas Children’s Hospital and St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital in Memphis by donating a hand-made crib quilt monthly.
Six new drug courts were added:
- 8/1/2005: 7th Judicial Circuit, Malvern
- 8/1/2005: 15th Judicial Circuit, Booneville
- 9/1/2005: 2nd Judicial Circuit, Paragould
- 10/1/2005: 19th Judicial Circuit, Berryville
- 11/1/2005: 16th Judicial Circuit, Heber Springs
- 12/1/2002: 3rd Judicial Circuit, Harrison
March 7, 2005, the Omega Supervision Sanction Center, a 300-bed facility for males opened in Malvern for technical violators.
DCC established the Southwest Arkansas Community Correction Center (SWACCC) Special Needs Program.
All DCC Community Correction Centers received a 3-year treatment license.
On August 12, 2005, the Early Release Program (Act 682 of 2005) was initiated at SWACCC releasing 34 residents.
The 6th Judicial District Drug Court (Little Rock) treatment component was relicensed for 3 years.
Drug testing machines were installed in 15 Probation/Parole Offices.
Three new day reporting centers were opened in Little Rock, Fort Smith and Fayetteville, for a total of 5 centers.
New federal grants were received for the implementation of a women and children reunification project for released women from prison, the female Special Needs Program, the purchase of vocational/technical instructional services in non-traditional occupations for females at the SEACCC, to provide instructional services to female residents in Restaurant Orientation/Sanitation and Safety and for the Serious and Violent Offender Project.
Transitional Housing Licensure requirements were established.
The agency increased its ability to interact with other criminal justice databases through the capabilities of e-OMIS (electronic Offender Management Information System).
The use of ESRI ArvView software was added during 2004 to graphically plot offender addresses.
DCC coordinates with 28 drug courts and saw the addition of 19 DCC supported drug courts.
A pilot sex-offender program was established with specialized officers, voice stress analysts and trained polygraphists to maintain the integrity of the program.
All DCC Community Correction Centers were accredited by the American Correctional Association (ACA) as adult community and residential centers.
The first Extraordinary Session of the 84th General Assembly passed a new DCC budget reflecting a $14,000,000 increase in general revenue and a $6,000,000 increase in capital improvement funds to establish new initiatives as follows:
- A 300-bed technical violators program
- A sex-offender program
- Absorb 8 and establish 21 additional drug courts with general revenues
- Add 51 new PPOs and supervisors to lower caseloads
- Add 5 day reporting centers and 7 counselors
- Expand the residential center capacity by 150-beds
On April 1, 2022, all residential facilities made the transition to performance-based standards for reaccrediation.
DCC created the Mass-Media Section that helped to establish the DCC presence on the World Wide Web.
DCC Director David Guntharp was elected Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Interstate Compact Commission.
The following represents the drug court start date after establishment:
- 1/4/2002: 12th Judicial Circuit, Fort Smith (Sebastian County)
- 2/7/2022: 22nd Judicial District, received a Drug Court Planning grant for Benton (Saline County)
- 6/6/2022: 8th Judicial Circuit North, Hop (Hempstead County)
- Received $347,213 (plus 25% agency match) grant for the implementation of the Hope Drug Court. The first participants were received on 12/4/2022.
During the 83rd Session of the General Assembly, Act 323 was signed into law renaming the DCP to the Department of Community Correction (DCC) on August 13, 2001 and authorized the State of Arkansas to enter into a new Interstate Compact for the supervision of adult offenders and names the DCC Director as the Interstate Compact Administrator and Commissioner on the State Council for Interstate Compact.
In April and August, the Commission of Accreditation awarded DCC its first accreditation certificates for correction facilities and probation and parole services.
The Institutional Parole Services component of the ADC was transferred by the Board of Corrections to the DCC Probation/Parole Services Division.
DCC assumed responsibility for outpatient substance abuse treatment in the Probation/Parole Services, primarily through the initial hiring of 7 Substance Abuse Treatment Counselors.
DCC began establishing enhanced community-based alternatives to traditional prison through innovative programs such as day reporting centers, drug courts, internal outpatient substance abuse treatment programs and roving counselor services.
A statewide, web-based offender tracking and management information system (shared with ADC) which houses data on all of the State’s adult corrections population and makes it accessible to law enforcement agencies statewide was established.
The 4 Community Correction Centers obtained treatment licenses and graduated one of the top 10 G.E.D. classes in the State.
Obtained $1,170,780 in grant funding to pilot and operate programs dealing with long term treatment for offenders with substance abuse, mental health and medical problems, restoration of historical property and vocational/technical instructional services.
A technical violators intake program to ease county jail backup was implemented.
A course in domestic violence and child abuse training was developed and incorporated in the Basic Probation/Parole Officer Basic Training Academy to comply with new legislation (Act 1452 of 2001).
The following represents the drug court start date after establishment:
- 10/18/2001: 21st Judicial Circuit, Van Buren (Crawford County)
- 11/08/2001: 13th Judicial Circuit, Magnolia (Columbia County)
- 11/14/2001: 19th Judicial Circuit, Bentonville (Benton County)
- 11/29/2001: 8th Judicial Circuit South, Texarkana (Miller County)
The DCP management team worked with the 83rd Session of the General Assembly to create the following bills:
- Act 113 of 2001: This Act provides scholarships to children of deceased or disabled employees of the DCP and provides death benefits to the supervisors of the employees of the DCP.
- Act 323 of 2001: This Act renamed the DCP, the Board of Correction and Community Punishment, and the Community Punishment Revolving Fund.
- Act of 2001: This Act enters into a new Interstate Compact for the supervision of adult offenders.
The development of a web-based offender tracking system was initiated.
The DCP assumed responsibility for the Pulaski County Post Adjudication Drug Court.
The Northeast Arkansas Community Punishment Center opened in August.
In August, the DCP’s first Director, Paula G. Pumphrey, retired from State government and Veter Howard (then DCP Chief Deputy Director) was named Interim Director. In November, G. David Gunthap was hired by the Board of Correction and Community Punishment as DCP Director.
The first agency Employee Handbook was developed and the implementation of the employee drug testing program went into affect.
A timed assessment tool was implemented which measures the total person, general abilities, interests and personality to assist the decision-making process selecting the best person for the job, promoting the right person, coaching existing employees for better performance and succession planning.
Moral Recognition Therapy (MRT) is a behavioral modification program for probation and parole offenders was implemented.
An agency-wide network which allowed implementation of electronic mail was established.
Construction of the Northeast Arkansas Community Punishment Center in Osceola is 75% complete.
Former Governor Mike Huckabee declared a “Community Corrections Month.”
Contacts for substance abuse and mental health treatment services was developed for offenders under community supervision.
Consolidation of probation and parole caseloads was initiated statewide.
The Community Corrections News, a DCP quarterly newsletter, was established.
Community Punishment Centers were implemented using the modified therapeutic community model as a behavioral modification program for offenders and a management tool for staff. This was a direct result of research conducted to find ways to reduce the cost of corrections in Arkansas by having a direct impact on recidivism, disrupting the revolving crime cycle.
A 108-hour curriculum for the Probation and parole Specialized Law Enforcement Officer training was implemented certified by the Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training (CLEST).
The fourth center, the Northeast Arkansas Community Punishment Center (now known as the Northeast Arkansas Community Correction Center), was sited in Osceola.
Standards of agency training were developed and implemented.
DCP received a National Institute of Corrections long-term technical assistance award to provide extensive on-site leadership training.
The third Community Punishment Center, Southwest Arkansas Community Punishment Center (now known at the Southwest Arkansas Community Correction Center), was sited in Texarkana and opened later in the year.
For the first time, a contract was implemented for substance abuse and mental health treatment services for parolees and probationers. Along with that contract, the implementation of electronic monitoring contract to monitor offenders under community supervision began.
The Pulaski County Post Adjudication Drug Court began under the administrative oversight of the Administrative Office of the Courts in partnership with the DCP, the Sentencing Commission and others.
Access to Arkansas Crime Information Center (ACIC) and the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) expanded statewide.
Central Arkansas Community Punishment Center opened and began receiving residents on March 8, 1994.
The development of the architecture of the Community Punishment Center model was coordinated.
The DCP management team was established to address issues and develop the agency mission statement.
The Southeast Arkansas Community Punishment Center opened in August.
The Arkansas Legislature passed the Community Punishment Act (548) establishing the Department of Community Punishment (DCP). The purpose of this act was to establish an agency to assume the responsibilities of management of all community punishment facilities and services, execute the orders of the criminal courts of the State of Arkansas and provide for the supervision, treatment, rehabilitation and restoration of adult offenders as useful law-abiding citizens within the community.
Former Governor Jim Guy Tucker appointed Paula G. Pumphrey, Director of the former Arkansas Adult Probation Commission, as the first Director of the Arkansas Department of Community Punishment.
The Board of Correction was abolished and the Board of Correction and Community Punishment was created with 7 members to initially serve staggered terms of 1 to 7 years. By statute, the Board consisted of a member from the facility of the University of Arkansas Criminal Justice Department, the Post Prison Transfer Board Chairman and 5 laypersons. All were appointed by the Governor as voting members. This Board had the responsibility to oversee both DCP and the Arkansas Department of Correction (ADC).
The Field Services (Parole) Division of ADC was transferred to the DCP and the Adult Probation Services in the judicial districts came under the new DCP, with the exception of 2 divisions in the 6th judicial district.
Plans began on the Central Arkansas Community Punishment Center (now known at the Central Arkansas Community Correction Center) which was the first center to be established and was located in Little Rock. The second center to be sited was the Southeast Arkansas Community Punishment Center located in Pine Bluff.
Former Governor Bill Clinton evaluated the corrections system by signing into las an act to create the Corrections Resources Commission to study the Arkansas Corrections System and provide recommendations to the Legislature, which would provide for a more effective method of allocating correctional resources. The major criminal justice officials of the State came together and spent 2 years discussing and debating the direction Arkansas should take to try and close the revolving door of crime impacting prison and jail beds.
Act 151 of 1983 – Former Governor Bill Clinton signed into law an act to create the Arkansas Probation Commission (AAPC). The AAPC provided assistance to the judicial districts, developed adult probation supervision standards, provided financial aid for developing viable alternatives to incarceration, established a fee collection system, established minimum qualifications, training and certification of officers and developed a code of ethics for adult probation officers.