Local News

Budget withholds funds for sheriff's offices

Posted August 11, 2009

The Wake County Sheriff's Office stands to lose about $600,000 annually in state funding, and that could mean challenges for the agency, Sheriff Donnie Harrison said Tuesday.

The new $19 billion state budget no longer requires the North Carolina Department of Correction to pay sheriff's offices $18 per day to house inmates serving 30- to 90-day sentences.

Harrison said that amounts to about $50,000 a month for Wake County.

He said he is not sure how his agency will absorb the impact of the loss of funding. The county is working with Harrison to find ways to make up the shortfall.

But Harrison said that letting prisoners out of jail early is not an option.

"We're going to put them in jail, and we're going to house them and we're going to do the best we can with what we got," Harrison said. "Are we going to have to cut somewhere else? Hopefully not. Hopefully, we'll find the money somewhere."

Meanwhile, Harrison said the cost of housing all inmates is increasing as their health care needs have increased dramatically.

The Wake County Detention Center houses as many as 1,400 inmates a day.


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  • superman Aug 12, 2009

    vaulter-- I suggest you read my comment again. Someone else said there was a weight room in the gym. I was merely asking where it was. Is there a site where we can check to see how much the administrators make? It be most interesting! As far as my ignorance, before I retired I worked at the Wake County jail. So just what is your job there? You must be one of those high paid "fat cat buddies" of the sheriff. One last question, just how fair can a sheriff be. He was dating a married woman! Fair sheriff with no morales.

  • vaulter Aug 12, 2009

    Superman - you are just showing your obvious ignorance here (ie. your horrendous spelling of the word 'forfeiture' and speaking about this 'weight room'). There is no weight room in the Wake County Jail. And on top of all that, there are no 'fat cat' administrators in the jail, and certainly none of top administrators even come close to $100,000 in salary. Check your facts before you type please.

  • Professor Aug 12, 2009


  • XARABELLE Aug 12, 2009

    except for you superman...Donnie Harrison is one of the best, just, and fair Sheriff's this county has ever had.

  • XARABELLE Aug 12, 2009

    ....and here we go with the corevette thing again....are you crazy? Think about it, using that Corvette costs them the same amount of money as a Crown Vic and/or Impala, BUT they didn't have to pay $35k for it! Quit with that lame excuse PLEASE! All you other people out there have some pretty good points though...and I must add, people should NEVER vote straight ticket in an election, old Bevy got freakin' lucky Obama ran for office if I do say so myself. She's useless!

  • superman Aug 12, 2009

    Fines and fortitures are given to the school. You give the sheriff that money and then the schools will have an additional shortfall. Suggest our good sheriff cut out some of the top administrators. Throw out the fat cats in your club. Just where is the weight room in the county jail? The inmates there 24 hours a day and security has much less trouble when they have something to do. Where would you suggest they grow food in the jail? I am sure they have several administrators at the jail making over 100k. He hired all his buddies just like the governor.

  • zwm02 Aug 12, 2009

    As Paul Harvey use to say, "And now for the other side of the story." On any given day at Central Prison there are between 70 and 80 "safekeepers." They come from across the State. A Safekeeper is an individual charged with a crime but has not gone to trial and been convicted. They are sent on a judges order and DOC cannot deny them. They are sent because the Jail cannot, or will not, provide for their needs or they send them in as management problems. The safekeepers include those requiring mental health services at both the inpatient and outpatient levels and individuals with extremely serious(and expensive) medical needs, such as dialysis and chemo/radiation therapy. The counties get off real cheap compared to the %18 they are spending to house the State inmates.

  • LongHorns Aug 12, 2009

    First the Sheriff has a job not many can do. Now the state is expecting him to house thugs in the county jail until they can pick them up, without giving him a dime. Second there are not alot of non-violent offenders in the county jail, there are alot of violent people in that jail waiting for court or pick up to go to prison, and some will serve there time in the county. Its a messed up system and the sheriff has to watch over it. Thanks Sheriff

  • RonnieR Aug 12, 2009

    Do what the Sheriif did in the county where I used to live. If the jail was full, he or one of his deputies, would tell the judge "Make that 181 days, you Honor" whenever a sentence of less than 180 days was issued. Judge would say "Strike that, 181 days assigned to the Department of Corrections". DOC has to take them then.

  • joco cruiser Aug 12, 2009

    Let all of the illegals out since that is what Obama would do. That would clear out a ton of space.