Harrison County commissioners hear sheriff’s report

T-L Photo/DYLAN McKENZIE Harrsion County Sheriff Ron Myers reads off his year in review report at Wednesday’s meeting. Myers reported that the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department spent a total of $562,894 in jail keep for the year.

CADIZ — Harrison County commissioners heard from Sheriff Ron Myers on Wednesday as he reviewed the expenditures of his department during 2017.

Sheriff Ron Myers read off his year in review report at Wednesday’s commission meeting. Myers said the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department spent a total of $562,894 in jail keep — housing prisoners — for the year. The department also spent $87,252 on deputies assigned to transport prisoners to other facilities when the Harrison County Jail became too crowded.

Myers said deputies must accompany any prisoner transports, meaning that the deputies must be compensated for the time worked. Myers noted that the cost of jail keep is up “a good bit” from years past, and that one of he bigger expenditures for the department is for prisoner transports.

“It’s a costly venture taking them to jail,” Myers said.

Based on a cost of 54.5 cents per mile with 35,621 miles traveled, the department spent $19,413.45 on taking prisoners to other facilities, not including the cost of paying deputies who worked on the transports.

The department had a total of 15,275 calls for service throughout the year. Myers said deputies responded to 261 hang-up calls to 911, adding that even if the call is a hang-up a deputy will respond to check on the situation.

“We still make sure someone goes out,” the sheriff said. “If they don’t answer, we’ll definitely go out and see if it’s an emergency.”

Meanwhile, the commissioners passed a resolution to reconstitute the local corrections planning board to help ensure the county can “fully meet the needs of Harrison County for local corrections.” The board will be led by Judge T. Shawn Hervey and John Jackson, with statutory members including Judge T. Mark Beetham, county Prosecutor Owen Beetham, Public Defender C. Adrian Pincola, Myers, Cadiz Mayor Ken Zitko and Cadiz Police Chief Ryan McCann and county Commissioner Paul Coffland, among others. The members’ terms will start on July 1 and run through June 2019.

Doug Crabtree, representing the county engineer’s office, brought forth a resolution to allow the department to utilize existing county employee forces and proceed by “Force Account” for 2018 to help with the construction, repair, improvement, maintenance and reconstruction of roads bridges and culverts throughout the county; commissioners approved the resolution. Crabtree also cautioned the public to be careful driving this weekend, as the area may experience winter weather during that time.

Coffland also said Cadiz Village Administrator Charley Bowman wanted to offer his thanks to county employees Steve Rocknich and Bobby Jones, county Engineer Rob Sterling, Emergency Management Agency Director Eric Wilson and the county health department for their help with a leaky waterline experienced by the village on Monday. They also helped in preparing and organizing for the chance the leak wouldn’t be quickly found.

“It was a very good example of government being able to help government,” Coffland said.

The Harrison County Board of Commissioners meets regularly at 10 a.m. on Wednesdays in the county courthouse in Cadiz.