Board of County Commissioners Hearing April 23, 2019 during which Sheriff Shrader presented the above, and more. There was also testimony from John McDonald, the leader of Jefferson County Public Schools Department of Safety, and others.
JCSO Instructed to Reduce 2020 Budget by 7%
Total Impact Is Approximately $10 Million
The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office may be required to decrease jail beds by as much as 44% to meet a proposed 2020 budget reduction.
Earlier this month, Sheriff Jeff Shrader received instructions from the Jefferson County Manager’s Office to reduce the Sheriff’s Office 2020 budget by 7%, or $6.7 million. In addition to reducing jail capacity by 400 – 600 beds, potential impacts of this directive include:
• Eliminating the U.S. Marshal contract for jail beds, a $1.8 million revenue loss
• Keeping job vacancies open to reduce personnel costs
Beginning this year, the county also implemented a new policy that charges termination pay-outs back to the affected department, while also taking vacancy savings from the affected department, resulting in an additional $1.3 million impact to the Sheriff’s Office budget. This, combined with the proposed 7% cut and the loss of the U.S. Marshal contract, results in an almost $10 million decrease to the JCSO’s 2020 budget.
Local police chiefs, community members, and other public safety stakeholders agree with Sheriff Shrader that “it is imperative the County engage in a prioritization solution to the 2020 budget deficit rather than pursing across-the-board cuts that will have a significant and regrettable effect on the public’s safety,” as illustrated above.
At an April 23rd presentation to the Board of County Commissioners, the sheriff explained his concerns and described how the proposed budget cuts will affect the community. The sheriff also committed to being an active participant in helping Jefferson County identify a suitable solution to address next year’s budget deficit that does not result in lay-offs to Sheriff’s personnel nor compromise our ability to ensure Jefferson County is a safe place for all people to live, learn, work, and play.