Commissioners approve Hays County Jail survey

By Paige Lambert

More requests for transferring inmates from the Hays County Jail to other facilities because of overcrowding was the catalyst for another jail study. The previous study was conducted five years ago.

Hays County Commissioners on Tuesday approved the firm Griffith Mossley Johnson & Associates to conduct a survey of the jail. Items covered in the study include facilities, staffing and procedures. The research will include a review of existing data along with staff interviews.

The three-month research study will cost an estimated $90,000, though the contract will be set up as a not to exceed amount of $100,000. 

The item was brought forth weeks ago and several commissioners said it would be the last study the county would fund.

“I think if we aren’t careful this has the ability, as the old saying goes, to bite us in the backside,” Commissioner Ray Whisenant said.

Commissioner Debbie Ingalsbe said she hoped the cost would be lower.

“We know we are on a tight time frame and want to get things going,” she said. “I hope there is a lot of information we can get from this study.”

Natasha Waggoner, the project manager who also worked on the last effort, said the implementation of a coordinating committee to reach out to groups of jail personnel would cut down the cost and time down significantly.

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