Gregory keeps increasing jail revenue

By Chris Cooper - [email protected]

With just seven months into the fiscal year, the Logan County Detention Center is coming very close to last fiscal year’s total of $1,034,470 generated from state inmate stays at the jail. From June through December 2016 the jail has already brought in $950,690, just $83,780 short with five more months to go. The jail has been averaging over $135,000 each month. At this rate if numbers stay the same, the county is looking at generating over a million and a half dollars from state inmates.

A state inmate is someone who has been processed through the judicial system and has been sentenced. The Kentucky Department of Corrections pays $31.34 per day per state inmate to the facility that houses them. By increasing state inmates at the jail, this in turn increases revenue relieving the local taxpayer burden to run the jail. A county inmate is someone who is waiting to be processed through he judicial system. Their stay is paid totally from county taxes.

The Logan County Detention Center not only receives funding for state inmate stays, it also receives revenue from other actions including the collection of booking fees and the canteen.

It costs the jail approximately $10-$11 per day to house an inmate. However, this does not include the overhead associated such as medical, utilities and manpower.

“The jail makes about $15 a day off a state inmate,” said Gregory, who began his term saying he would do all he could to make the jail pay for itself instead of the taxpayers having to foot the bill.

Gregory reported 209 inmates in the county jail as of Tuesday, Jan. 10. Out of those, 118 are classified as state with 91 as county. The jail is still facing an overcrowding problem on the county side, however, Gregory reports the jail is running well.

“There is no overcrowding on the state side,” said Gregory. “In fact I’ve had to ship some state inmates out.”

Gregory said everyone is working very hard at the jail and it is a hard place to work. But their efforts are paying off.

“I made a promise to the taxpayers that I would run the jail like a business and as efficiently as possible,” Gregory said. “My first fiscal year as jailer, the jail saved the taxpayers over $750,000. It looks like the jail will do even better this fiscal year.”

Magistrate Dickie Carter is still concerned about future trouble that may occur at the jail because of the overcrowding. Carter has in the past expressed his desire to increase the state population at the jail, but now he is struggling with what to do with the overcrowding on the county side.

“As a court we need to ask why there are so many on the county side,” said Carter. “Is there really that many bad people in Logan County or is it a slow court system?” Carter also mentioned the food was “just okay.”

“We aren’t running a Hilton,” said Magistrate Thomas Bouldin.

Gregory said the jail offered a lot of programs that helped inmates, adding the work release program allows a lot of them to get out and contribute to the community.

Carter once again suggested building on to the detention center. Gregory said it would cost between $1.7 million-$2 million to add on enough space to have an extra 25 beds.

“If you are willing to spend that, I’m for it,” said Gregory. Magistrate Bouldin said he was not.

“If the crime rate continues to grown in Logan County we may not have a choice,” Gregory added. “There have been three jails built in Logan County over the years to deal with crime.

By Chris Cooper

[email protected]

To contact Chris Cooper, email [email protected] or call 270-726-8394.

To contact Chris Cooper, email [email protected] or call 270-726-8394.

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