Casey may add 32 beds to jail

November 04, 2003|BRENDA S. EDWARDS

LIBERTY - The idea of a 32-bed addition to Casey County Detention Center was brought up Monday at the Fiscal Court meeting.

Judge-Executive Ronald Wright asked the court to consider the addition because of overcrowding. He said adding 32 more beds would require the addition of one more jail employee.

The jail had 160 state and local inmates in the 122-bed facility last week.

Jailer Tommy Miller said the county is losing thousands of dollars because it has been turning away inmates in the past month and half.

"I turned away 70 paying inmates this past week," said Miller. "We had as many as 169 inmates with 154 of them paying." He said he has sent some inmates to other facilities to get the count down.


He suggested the addition of beds because of requests from other counties and another state. Miller has had requests for space from several counties in Indiana, which pays $36.50 per day plus medical bills.

The jail can handle more than 122 inmates with the holding areas and isolation cells, but Miller said the state Department of Corrections keeps a close eye on the jail population.

Miller said inmate labor could be used to construct the addition beside the E911 emergency communications center. He said four additional dorms can be located near the center.

"The jail is paying for itself," Miller said.

The jail had a $200,000 carryover from 2002 and $60,000 carryover in the first three months this year, Miller said.

The $4.3 million detention center opened July 1, 2002, and houses adult males and females. It replaced the old jail that closed in 1997 because it did not meet state and federal standards. During the time the jail was closed, local inmates were housed in other facilities. Juveniles continue to be housed in other nearby detention centers.

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