Monday, February 23, 2009

Why would a county Sheriff need a 'sales' department?

Have you ever heard of a county Sheriff's department with a "sales" division? That's what's needed in Garza County, reports the Lubbock Avalanche Journal ("New jail brings law enforcement closer," Feb. 22), to fill beds in a new jail aimed at profiteering from overcrowding in other counties:
"Our main thing is to get out and be a sales type department to get people to bring us inmate for us to house," [Garza County Sheriff Cliff] Laws said. "Right now it's just getting everything in place and up and running."
Said the Avalanche Journal, "In addition to housing out-of-county prisoners, the facility has also required a doubling of staff to 28." So Garza County has put itself in a position where a new jail will soak local taxpayers with high staffing costs if they can't find more inmates to fill the 96 bed jail.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Said the Avalanche Journal, "In addition to housing out-of-county prisoners, the facility has also required a doubling of staff to
28."

TCJS requires 1 jailer for every 48inmates. As of February 1, this county reported their inmate population at 23 or at 23.96% capacity.

28 jailers for 23 inmates?

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Well, since Garza County sees the jail as a jobs program, I guess they figure the more the merrier!

Anonymous said...

There's more that goes into it. At least three shifts, with the appropriate number of female guards, vacations, weekends, etc...

Anonymous said...

Scott..

Did you read where the new private jail facility being built in Burnet County which will hold 587 beds — more than five times as many as the county’s current jail.

http://jacksonville.bizjournals.com/austin/stories/2009/01/26/story8.html

Anonymous said...

"There's more that goes into it. At least three shifts, with the appropriate number of female guards, vacations, weekends, etc..."

Being a retired chief deputy sheriff, I know that.

I retired from a 182 bed facility with the same amount of jailers that Garza County has for 98 beds.

I also know that 28 jailers for 23 inmates is not being a good steward of taxpayer mooney.

Anonymous said...

No problem. Just make more arrests, get more people in jail. What a travesty.

Rev. Charles in Tulia

Anonymous said...

The 2007 estimated census for Garza County was 4700.

2007 UCR Index Crimes for Garza County

Murder 0
Rape 2
Robbery 1
Agg Assault 4
Burglary 13
Theft 57
Auto Theft 5

Total Index Crimes 82

Index Crime Arrests 9

Anonymous said...

This is the Prison Industrial Complex at it's finest. As Americans we should arrest, convict, and punish those who break our laws. Although we often think first of incarceration, the consequences may mean probation or community service. That we have allowed prisons to become "private" profit centers, enabling citizens (investors) to generate income is just horrible. Is it not obvious that these private companies send cash back to elected officials in the form of campaign contributions? Have we as a country gone so far off the rails that every function / entity must produce a profit? I'm disappointed with the conduct of this Sheriff, the elected officials who approved this deal, and mostly with the voters who (re)elected them. Wake up people!

Anonymous said...

Being a retired chief deputy sheriff, I know that.

Sure, I was just making sure everyone else did.

I also know that 28 jailers for 23 inmates is not being a good steward of taxpayer mooney.

No argument here.

Anonymous said...

Out here on the South Plains, the Panhandle, and the Permian Basin, if you build it they will come. Post is about 35 miles SE of Lubbock (which will open it's new jail of 1500 population later this year.)

Just think though, if we locked up everyone who needed locked up, we'd need another 5,000 beds.LMB

Anonymous said...

"If we locked up everyone who needed locked up"--who would handle the keys?

Rev. Kiker

Don said...

Rev. Kiker--Right on! Who, indeed, would handle the keys? On the other hand, if we let everybody out who DIDN'T need to be there, it would probably balance out. I live in Levelland. I know rural West Texas. Of course, this jail at Post will generate a need to make more Mickey Mouse arrests. And they sell these Over-the-top county lockups like they sold the prisons: a boon to the economy, which they turn out not to be. These jails are turning the rural economy into a situation where everybody tries to make a living by housing everybody else's prisoners. What folly. (otherwise known as BS). They'd be better off cleaning each other's houses, mowing each others lawns etc.

Anonymous said...

Don, it could also be known as CS. Then people could clean each others' chicken houses. Except nobody has one anymore. Just clean them figuratively.
Rev. K

Anonymous said...

"Just think though, if we locked up everyone who needed locked up, we'd need another 5,000 beds.LMB"

But wouldn;t you agree, that due to over-criminalization of minor infractions that ".. who needed locked up ..(sic)" So do you say this from teh prospective of the laws on the books, or just viewing your own interpretation of laws that SHOULD be enforced over laws that are on the books?

We build Prisons like we build Wal-Marts in this state. One in every town, two on opposite corners. As Prison's are now for-hire, or profit making it seems to me that this will generate many different cases of conflict of interest, as business has pull (sometimes far too much of it) in these small towns that 'uphold' the law. We have 500 beds we need to fill, we busted 600 this month, we need more beds, we filled 600 more beds, rinse repeat. (insert we bought a new squad car where needed).

postnative said...

I work at the Garza County Jail. I have a jailer's license and am very fortunate to have found a job in my hometown. I am very grateful to the Sheriff and the county. I work 7pm to 7am and there are only two of us on my shift. One to work the floor and one to run the control picket. I think that is reasonable. BTW we are not fully staffed and wont be until we fill more beds.