Milwaukee Lawmaker Proposes to Make Lincoln Hills an Adult Treatment Center

Thursday, November 30, 2017 | by Joe Morey |

A democratic lawmaker in Madison, State Rep. Evan Goyke, from Milwaukee, is asking for bipartisan support on legislation that would address the state’s overcrowded prison population.

Goyke is proposing several bills and looking for co-sponsors. He is asking lawmakers to soften parole revocation for non-criminal rule violations, reinstate earned release for certain prisoners who complete treatment or educational programs, and to convert the Lincoln Hills youth prison into an adult-AODA treatment center housing up to 500 inmates.

Goyke said in a PowerPoint presentation to both republicans and democrats, that there are 9,900 men on the wait list for alcohol and other drug abuse treatment in prison. Goyke also said the state is 453 inmates over capacity in the men's correctional facilities and Wisconsin is about to send inmates across state lines to house them.

There are also prison inmates being held at county jails, Goyke said, which is costing the state $23,000 per day.

Goyke said in his presentation that Lincoln Hills is inefficient because it was designed to hold up to 550 youth inmates but there are currently only 135 juveniles there. He said those juvenile inmates could be moved to six to 10 new facilities around the state.

Goyke acknowledges these changes would have a cost, but said Goyke but urged Republicans to give them a hearing and have the Department of Corrections provide a fiscal estimate.

Goyke has yet to introduce the bills in the state assembly. He gave other legislators a deadline of Dec. 8 to co-sponsor the three bills proposed in his draft.

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