The Board of County Commissioners
of Kay County, Oklahoma, met in special session at ,
Chairman Schieber called the meeting to order.† Those present were as follows:† Vice-Chairman Laile Wilson; Wayne Leven, Member; Tammy Reese, County Clerk/Secretary (see sign-in sheet).
A joint meeting was held between the
Schieber explained his reasoning for wanting this joint meeting to discuss hiring an administrator for the jail.† Schieber said he spoke with Don Garrison and the State Departments Attorney.† Schieber said Garrison indicated if JFA would take the jail over and make improvements in the next 120 days he would postpone the levies of the fines.†
Don Jones reiterated that Garrison had basically told him the same thing.† If we will show progress and improvements he will hold things back.
Schieber said Garrison wants a telephone call tomorrow informing him of what was decided today.
Many questions and concerns arose from the JFA concerning hiring a jail administrator and who would be in charge of the jail and the jail administrator.
DA Mark Gibson addressed the legalities of some of their concerns.† First of all, the JFA would have to decide if they wanted to take over the jail in the near future and take action.† If you vote to accept responsibility and authority over the jail at that point you are the authority over the jail.† You hire, fire, set policy, etc.† The money would come from the commissioners.† A jail administrator, based upon what the commissioners decided at Mondayís meeting, they are going to authorize hiring an administrator at $40,000 a year.
The JFA questioned how doing this would solve anything.
Gibson finished the legalities by saying you, the JFA, would be responsible to hire a jail administrator and at that point the Sheriff and his personnel are no different than Ponca City Police Department and would have no connection with the jail.† They literally are completely out and the jail administrator would hire his or her employees.† From this point on the jail is run by this trust authority and whoever is hired as jail administrator.†
Trustee Gene Smith asked if this happened if the JFA would be responsible for the five Federal Lawsuits against the Sheriff.
Gibson said those are against the Sheriff and the county.† I have not yet determined the specifics of that and part of that would depend upon how it is set up by you and the commissioners.† For instance, if you had total decision making authority at that point you would carry the liability and the county would be the backer, but I can not directly answer your question yet because I donít know yet.
the board members spoke up at this point with several concerns.†† Norris Frederick said when we (JFA) were
brought on to serve on this board I was not under the impression I would be
running a jail.† There is some experience
levels, training, educational issues, and law enforcement issues that at this
point I donít intend to get into.† For
the JFA to governor a jail administrator who reports to me when I have no
knowledge as to what is he reporting, I have a real problem with that.† Do I think we need a jail administrator?† Yes, said
JFA Chairman Robinson said were we to assume operation of the jail we have a plan that Donald has prepared for us and would be the guidelines for us to use if we were to take over the jail administration part of the jail.† There are some guidelines and plans that could be put into place fairly quickly.† But for now Robinson said he is in total agreement with Norris and question the JFAís qualifications to take over the jail.
Wilson addressed a question to Commissioner Schieber.†
Schieber said if we can just go out for resumes.†† Schieber said he would have a jail administrator on board before the JFA would even think about taking it over.† Schieber said he didnít expect the JFA to take the jail over today without having a jail administrator there to operate it.† It will take at least a month to hire an administrator.
Jail Consultant Don Jones said in all reality to set up the trust authority with the policies and procedure and operational part of the jail, including the inventory, the existing equipment that is in the jail, and figure out what was bought with which funds.† Jones said with all that in mind it could take several months.
Gibson said he would like to clarify again that a jail administrator is not being required by the jail inspector or their counsel.† Their saying that is a solution.† If you took that step he, the state inspector, would consider that as a positive, as long as people were being interviewed and hired, etc.† That is a solution to be considered but also there are others, as well.† He (state jail inspector) wants to see concrete action.† Gibson said I donít want anybody to think that he is requiring a jail administrator because that is not the case.
Both boards listened to current Jail Administrator Stephanie Ringgold.† Ringgold talked about the jail conditions and the stress she and others are under each and every day working with prisoners.† Ringgold said she has sacrificed her life for this job and stated she has gone above and beyond the call of duty.†
The JFA board asked Van Hoesen to explain the hiring and training process of his staff.
The board expressed concerns about the budgeting issues.
Grossardt said he sees the immediate needs to fall direct with the county commissioners because of the position they are in.† They are the county government. They are ultimately in charge of the county operations and, the sheriff, of course, is a player in that.†† I donít want to set this trust up to fail.† I donít have any real reservations of taking over operations of the county jail once I feel confident it can be a violable endeavor and it will work.† Until we have county money to fix the problems with the jail, I donít see us making a lot of progress.† I feel all the players and all the entities are in place to fix current problems.† Grossardt said it is all county money and if it means a mile section of roads canít get fixed this year in all three districts, so be it, you need to prioritize your money.
Leven commented and said we canít mix highway money - that is a state law.†
It was the consensus of the JFA that they are not ready at this time to take over the jail.
Commissioner Leven explained that by statutes the commissioners can not take over the jail and the only way to take over the jail is through this trust authority.
After much conversation regarding this issue Van Hoesen recommended to begin the application process for hiring a jail administrator with a salary cap of $40,000 then revisit Item 4 on Agenda and make a recommendation on an architect.† Recommendation was seconded by Grossardt.† More decision occurred.† The motion was amended by Van Hoesen recommending beginning the application process to hire a jail administrator with his or her salary not to exceed 80% of the sheriffís salary; the recommendation was seconded by Grossardt.† Motion carried.
Van Hoesen recommended making a motion to select the architect firm.
Grossardt said we need to revisit Agenda Item 4D.
Motion was made by Van Hoesen and seconded by Stieber recommending SouthBuild as the Architectural Firm.
Robinson asked for discussion before calling for a vote.
Wes Young said he didnít know if the JFA is ready to make that decision.
Some of the members questioned problems that might occur with designing issues and quick response to issues because SB is located out-of state. While other members commented we could have the same problems receiving a quick resolve with firms located in state.
Giddens said he like the fact that SB would have a man here at all times.
Don Jones replied saying if that is a construction option that you prefer you can hire an independent firm to provide construction management services.
Discussion was made concerning the general contractor, sub contractors, bidding process, bid bonding, construction management services, etc.
Jail Administrator Stephanie Ringgold asked Don Jones who he recommended as the architect firm.
Robinson asked Don Jones who he would recommend as the architect firm since he is the JFAís Jail Consultant.
through his many experiences and from what he has seen so far and has been
involved with his choice would be Architects In Partnership (AIP) in
Robinson said he thought it was very important to listen to Don Jones advice and added he too was impressed with AIP.† They are a family firm and all they do is build jails.† The principalís son is guaranteed to be on site once a week and Robinson said that was an encouragement to him.† Robinson said he would have trouble not voting for AIP.
Brief discussion was made between members.
Motion was made by Van Hoesen and seconded by Stieber to withdraw original motion recommending SouthBuild as the architect firm.
Robinson said these issues would be revisited.
Leven told JFA members and others in attendance after the meeting he would give them a tour of the jail to witness first hand the damages the inmates made in the jail.
Motion was made by Schieber and seconded by Leven to
adjourn ().† Motion carried: †Schieber, aye; Leven, aye;
Approved this _____day of ______, 2007.
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† DEE SCHIEBER, CHAIRMAN
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† LAILE WILSON, VICE-CHAIRMAN
††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† WAYNE LEVEN, MEMBER
SECRETARY, BOARD OF