Costs increase at Adams County sheriff’s office

Published 1:57 am Tuesday, November 9, 2010

It’s costing more to operate the Adams County Sheriff’s Department.

Sheriff Chuck Mayfield said the largest expenses in his office have been computers and office positions.

The sheriff’s office spent nearly $2.5 million on administration in the 2009-2010 fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2010. Those expenses increased by $293,000 or 13.3 percent from the previous fiscal year’s expenses of $2.2 million.

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The administration at the sheriff’s office experienced rapid, unplanned changes in 2009, with the death of Sheriff Ronny Brown in March 2009. Brown’s wife, Angie served as interim sheriff for nine months from March 2009 until Mayfield was sworn in Dec. 4, 2009.

Mayfield said it was during the period of transition, when Angie Brown was leading the department, that a new computer system was purchased, contributing to a large portion of the budget increase.

The nearly $300,000 increase from 2009 to 2010 was spent mostly on the new computer system, clerical personnel, a category called “other contractual services” and vehicle equipment, according to budget records.

Mayfield said the new computer system should streamline data to allow inmate history, processing data, warrants and data from the Natchez Police Department to be located in one place.

The system should also connect to the national databases for criminal history of every inmate booked at the Adams County jail.

However, Mayfield said the new system is not completely ready, and the office has experienced some problems with it.