Revenue continues to pour in through the Logan County Detention Center thanks to the increase of state inmates at the facility. According to jailer Phil Gregory, the detention center has already met its projections for revenue for fiscal year 2016-2017, and there are four more months to go.
“As of Feb. 8, 2017, we have collected $1,075,432 and budgeted $1,006,821. There is still four months of revenue to be collected by the end of the fiscal year which ends June 30, 2017,” said Gregory. “This is exactly what I set out to do when becoming elected. I wanted to ease the burden on the court as well as the taxpayers.”
When the jail was built over 20 years ago it was supposed to be self-sufficient, however, over the years the county has had to subsidize the institution with millions of dollars of taxpayer money. The county pays between $500,000-$600,000 annually to keep the jail doors open. But now, thanks to the increasing of the state inmate population, those subsidies are shrinking.
During fiscal year 2013-2014, the state inmate program generated $416,446. During Gregory’s first full fiscal year 2015-2016 he budgeted for $620,000 and generated $1,111,441.
A state inmate is one who has been processed through the court system and are serving out their sentence. A large percentage of an inmate’s stay in jail is paid for by the Commonwealth. A county inmate is someone who is awaiting their process through the court system. Their stay at the jail (food, lodging and medical expenses, etc.) is paid by local taxes. Funds generated from the state inmate cuts back a great deal of money the county has to subsidize the jail each year.
“With the surplus in revenue we have modernized the facility to ensure the safety and security of our operation and the community as well,” Gregory said. “We have added a security fence around the perimeter, new camera system, and a new jail management software program for record keeping.”
The state inmate work program not only brings in revenue, but also provides over a million dollars worth of community service work each year. They provide services to the Logan County Humane Society, the Logan County Recycling, the historic Logan County Courthouse, the Auburn and Russellville Park Departments, East Logan Water Department, the Russellville Cemetery, Agape, the Russellville Street Department, City of Lewisburg, Logan County Airport and the Logan County Sheriff’s Department, as well as many others.
“We also have several state inmates that work to pick up the trash on the highways as part of the Litter Abatement Program,” added Gregory. “We have a mowing and landscaping crew who takes care of the landscaping at sites including the Bibb house, Schochoh Community Center, Crossroads Community Center, Saddle Factory, Orndorff Townsend House Museum, Cooksey House Museum, Morton Kimbrough House Museum and the Western Kentucky African American Heritage Center, as well as others.”
Logan County’s Detention Center has suffered overcrowding as well. Mostly, according to Gregory, it has been on the county side. If the state side goes over the allotted amount, Gregory has to ship out those state inmates to another facility.
“Anytime you can bring Logan County taxpayer dollars back to Logan County I consider that to be a good thing,” said the jailer. “I am very proud of the way things are going with the revenue from the state inmate program here at the Logan County Detention Center. Everyone is working very hard to help make sure that we can bring this revenue into Logan County and help alleviate the strain on the taxpayers. By bringing in the extra revenue, this frees up the money so the county can use it in other ways to help benefit the taxpayers.”
To contact Chris Cooper, email [email protected] or call 270-726-8394.