Ankle monitoring for Lowndes County Jail @ LCC 13 December 2011

Tuesday the Lowndes County Commission approved ankle bracelet monitoring for nonviolent jail inmates so they can serve the rest of their time outside the jail, putting them in a better environment and decreasing expenses at the Sheriff’s office. This sounds like a good idea. I have not expressed an opinion because, as Barbara Stratton pointed out, the public doesn’t really know what was in the proposal County Commissioners got in their agenda packet. However, I would like to compliment Commissioner Joyce Evans about trying to do something about nonviolent prisoners.

Summarizing the ankle monitoring discussion of Monday morning, County Manager Joe Pritchard Tuesday evening asked the Lowndes County Commission to approve continued work by county staff with the Sheriff’s office in implementing an ankle monitoring system to move some inmates out of the county jail.

Commissioner Richard Raines gave the credit to Commissioner Joyce Evans for both proposing a drug court and for proposing ankle monitoring.

Commissioner Evans declined comment but did make the motion, seconded by Commissioner Powell, and approved unanimously.

The VDT had a little more information in David Rodock’s Wednesday story:

Commissioners were offered three options for the number of total ankle monitors, each of which would also include hiring an employee to administer the program, a county vehicle, smartphone and office supplies. Monitors are quoted at $7 a day and total administrative costs are estimated at $45,000.

The request was unanimously approved, but the number of monitors was not specified at the meeting.

We know from Monday’s discussion that $7/day is much less than it costs to keep a prisoner in jail, so it would appear that the program will break even at some number of prisoners in the program that’s hard to calculate without more information. Plus perhaps more important considerations such as where are the prisoners expected to go? Are we talking house arrest, or stay in the general area and report in frequently, or…?

How hard would it be for the Commission to put information like that on their own website for the public to see? Still, once again compliments to Joyce Evans for trying to do something. We’ll see how it works.

Here’s the video:

Ankle monitoring for Lowndes County Jail @ LCC 13 December 2011
Regular Session, Lowndes County Commission (LCC),
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 13 December 2011.
Videos by Gretchen Quarterman for LAKE, the Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange.


3 thoughts on “Ankle monitoring for Lowndes County Jail @ LCC 13 December 2011

  1. Jessica B. Hughes

    I really support this idea. Initially, I was concerned about it, because I know that things like the SCRAM bracelet and the ignition interlock devices are very expensive to install and maintain, especially if you consider the costs involved with probation fees. $213.00/month may not sound like a lot of money to some people, but it is a king’s ransom to others (saying $7.00/day makes it seem more manageable). Still, allowing non-violent offenders the opportunity to work and rehabilitate themselves outside of a prison is a big step forward in the philosophy of crime and punishment in this county, in my opinion.

  2. Robert Nagle

    An intelligent step, but $7 a day? For $25 worth of hardware? I need to invest in the companies that maintain this equipment, it seems to be a growth industry with huge profits and little risk.
    When did justice become a profit center? I understand the value of making miscreants pay for their supervision, but the numbers I hear always sound a bit out of whack with my understanding of true costs.

  3. office supplies

    I’m really impressed that this decision was made. At the end of the day, the citizens are the ones who pay for inmates to be jailed so less is always more. Secondly, it could give some offenders a different outlook on the judicial system and possibly eliminate some rebellion and secondary offenses if used properly.

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