Information from WYSH Radio
The Anderson County Commission will hold a special-called meeting on Monday, June 10, at 6 p.m. in Room 312 of the Anderson County Courthouse in Clinton to continue their discussions of the budget for the upcoming fiscal year that begins on July 1.
The main hurdles to passing a budget so far have been finding funds for the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department to hire enough jailers to adequately staff the jail expansion scheduled for completion later this year and what to do with a program aimed at keeping the chronically overcrowded jail’s population down. The Sheriff’s Office has requested money to hire 34 jailers but so far funds for only 15 have been found.
The Alternatives to Incarceration program could see its budget slashed from $300,000 to $58,000 if the budget were to pass in its current form.
In a guest column published on Oak Ridge Today on Saturday, Anderson County Mayor Terry Frank lays out her plan to keep the program going at a significantly reduced funding level. Those suggestions include eliminating the director’s position and using some money as a stipend for a volunteer or current employee to organize the network of organizations and/or volunteers currently engaged in rehabilitative programs to continue that work, maintaining the pre-trial release program with some revisions, expanding the home monitoring system for offenders, and possibly lobbying state leaders in Nashville for changes to the ways that jail operations are funded. Those changes could include finding ways to reduce operating costs and inmate health care costs at the jail, among other ideas.
A budget workshop is also scheduled for June 13, and if no budget is passed during the Commission meeting on June 17, two more budget meetings could be held on the 20 and the 24.
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