Sheriff Dumps Inmate Labor Use At Convenience Center

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Cannon County Sheriff Darrell Young said Friday use of inmate labor full time at the Cannon County Convenience Center will be discontinued.

Sheriff Young said he will allow trustys who work with the Cannon County Maintenance Department and Cannon County Litter Control to assist in cleanup at the convenience center, but added the inmates will no longer have direct contact with the general public.

The sheriff recently pulled inmates from working at the convenience center because of lack of adequate supervision by county employees who work there.

"The public has wore my phone out thanking me for taking inmates out of there," Sheriff Young said.

"I know I can't please everyone, but I have to do what is best for the sheriff's department and the jail," Sheriff Young said. "Since we have stopped allowing them to go there, no more tobacco or drugs have been found in the jail, and that used to be an everyday occurrence."

Sheriff Young said the inmate work crews of Darrell Fisher (county maintenance) and Russell Paschal (litter control) will be permitted to perform cleanup work at the convenience center as desired or needed by Cannon County Executive Mike Gannon. Fisher and Paschal have had training in supervising trustys, the sheriff said.

"They will not be coming into direct contact with the public or handling garbage," Sheriff Young said.

Gannon said Friday that although there will be less people working at the convenience center now, it will continue to maintain its current schedule of operation.

"That's his (Sheriff Young's) decision and I will have to work within what he decides," Gannon said. "I do appreciate the sheriff continuing to allow us to use inmates for the maintenance and litter crews."

Gannon added that he will work with the employees of the convenience center to "keep receiving trash there as convenient as possible" for the general public.

Currently three county employees work at the center, which is open 60 hours per week.
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Members Opinions:
January 28, 2011 at 10:54am
Thank you Sheriff for listening!!!!
January 28, 2011 at 11:32am
You have to be impressed with the acumen of Sheriff Young. His insight into the potential problems and recognition of past problems with the casual contact of inmates and the public is to be applauded by all who use that area.

January 28, 2011 at 11:44am
Glad to hear this. Figured they went through the trash. Reminder to shred or burn sensitive papers.
January 28, 2011 at 12:58pm
well since the 3 county employees are usually seen sitting in front of a heater instead of doing something there shouldn't be a problem with convinience as long as they do the job the county pays them for
January 28, 2011 at 1:05pm
A very quick response!

Although I don't think some contact with inmates is a bad thing...

It seems that this option wasn't working out to the communities benefit.

I just hope these same people will be sensitive to those inmates who return to society...

People who make minor mistakes should not be punished for the rest of their lives...
January 28, 2011 at 1:41pm
"Sheriff Young said. "Since we have stopped allowing them to go there, no more tobacco or drugs have been found in the jail, and that used to be an everyday occurrence."

Gee, seems like it wouldn't have taken much of an investigation to have figured that out long ago.
January 28, 2011 at 2:27pm
Pen is mightier than the sword thanks to the courier.
January 28, 2011 at 7:23pm
Wow! I thought for all these years those "employees" only had to watch the inmates. I wish I could find a job sitting in a chair and saying "pile your cardboard over there" and lets not forget "trailers full no tires this week". I guess the Solid Waste Department will be OVER-Budget again this year, but it always is anyway. Maybe if we moved the county executives office to the inconvenience center we could safe some $$$.
January 28, 2011 at 7:28pm
Well, apparently we have a Sheriff with some common sense. Cannon County should be proud that this decision has been made. Thanks Darrell.
January 28, 2011 at 7:38pm
Does this mean that we will not see inmates working Good Ole Days as well?
January 28, 2011 at 7:44pm
BY; Drag Race 1 RE/bigmouth. What is the diference from our county/ road people than the state/ DOT workers I see the state workers either standing outside the trucks doing no more than leaning againist the truck or asleep in it. When I have seen our
litter crew from the sherrifs dept. they were always picking up trash from our road sides. Our state workers are paid by us by the hour. The inmates of Cannon Co. are paid nothing to pick up trash. Sheriff Young is doing a great job and I thank him @ his staff for all they have in a short time.

r litter crew they were always were picking up trash on our roads sides.
January 28, 2011 at 10:50pm
Thank you so much Sheriff Young. It's so nice to have someone that truly listens to our concerns!
January 29, 2011 at 11:34am
Sorry folks, I do not agree. If a person is disabled who is going to be there to help?
January 29, 2011 at 5:04pm
I don't thing we should do without the inmates; there are other measures the sheriff can take. It is too hard on some people to empty their vehicles and those are the ones that don't have an option for pick-up.

There were long lines today and the trash was falling out of the actual bin it was so full. We need the inmates back, but with more controlled measures in place.
January 29, 2011 at 5:17pm
The absence of inmates may cause staffing problems where none existed previously, but the convenience center's operation is not the responsibility of the sheriff or his department. There are other solutions. Expecting the sheriff to carry the burden is almost akin to expecting the director of schools to send unruly kids there to work as punishment.

Exit question: What do people sentenced to perform community service do?
January 29, 2011 at 6:50pm
I agree with you Kevin. It is not the sheriff's responsibility. We would also like to know what the ppl that are supposed to perform community service are doing? They should be sent up there.
January 30, 2011 at 10:26am
Doesn't effect me one way or the other but i have seen many people at the dump that this will effect terribly. I realize as Kevin pointed out it is not the sheriffs responsibility but would be nice if he would take every opportunity he could find to help the community. I also know the wrath that would follow but the unruly kid idea is a good one.

maybe what we need badly is new management at the dump.
January 30, 2011 at 12:38pm
I think our sheriff has helped our community alot since he has taken office. I can't believe that statement was even made. Also there are other employees at the dump. They should help the ones that need help dumping their trash. So glad that the inmates will no longer be there.
January 30, 2011 at 2:47pm
In retrospect, the suggestion that a bi-partisan committee to be formed and to review county activities may not be a far fetched as once thought to be.

An old adage something along the lines of profiting from the past might suggest other activities the county is engaged in are receiving the same lax oversight as this program once did.

For the first time in remembrance the county has those who are really interested in looking into what is going on and not in just a superficial manner.

There are some who are most interested in finding solutions to problems that would find great interest in finding weak areas where potential problems could develop--solving problems before problems develop.

Let them start by reviewing this whole convenience center/inmate fiasco.

A myriad of questions beg an answer--from who knew what in the law enforcement section and where was the supervision and oversight of the convenience center and what did they know? Is there even today, a specific set of guidelines for those center employees to follow, are they enforced and posted for all to see?
Is there a specific set of guidelines for the supervisors of inmates to follow when inmates are allowed freedoms outside jail walls? What is in there to prevent inmates trashing collecting along county roads from having planned pickups for drugs and liquor or whatever?

The county has an opportunity to learn much from this incident if the willingness is there.

An opinion only and my thanks again to a Sheriff who did take action.
January 30, 2011 at 4:26pm
I ment in no way to imply that out sheriff was not helping our community but trying to say I hope and believe our sheriff will go beyond the realm of his "responsibility" to provide extra services that are safe and beneficial to everyone in our community including the inmates. I also agree that if the inmates are not there to assist those who are unable, there should be an employee to assist.
January 31, 2011 at 8:22pm
The inmates should have to work.The taxpayers have to furnish them room an board,we should get something in return,Its time for a change in personel at the dump.Put someone in there that will do the job.
February 02, 2011 at 8:58am
Court system should get involved and make people do their community service there.
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