Posted: Aug 12, 2011 6:19 PM by Michael Shingleton
Updated: Aug 12, 2011 6:19 PM
BATON ROUGE - After the two week trial period of opening the city jail in downtown Baton Rouge, city leaders are optimistic the jail could generate enough revenue to be operated 24 hours a day.
Constable Reginald Brown met with Mayor Pro Tem Mike Walker to outline his budget and plan to keep the jail open.
Brown's plan calls for adding 34 positions to his staff. Currently, Brown has 46 employees and hasn't added any since 2001 though the office has taken on more responsibilities.
The personnel addition including equipment and jail supplies would cost $2,237,338 a year.
During the two week trial period while the jail was open 5,131 warrants were cleared including 3,680 from City Court. 348 of those failed to pay up and were booked into the city jail.
In that time City Court generated $191,676.51. The majority of that money was put back into the city/parish general fund. Council member Mike Walker wants the money to go back to the constables office.
This money, if we collect it through this process it needs to go back into the process and be dedicated to that misdemeanor jail system to where you pay for yourself. We can't just put it in the general fund so someone can come along and say well we're not going to give it to you right now thank you for earning it but we want to use it for something else over here," Walker said.