By Jeremy D. Wells
Carter County Times
Carter County Jailer R.W. Boggs informed Carter County Fiscal Court on Monday night that the jail’s new federal housing rate became official on April 1 for all federal prisoners held by Carter County. That rate, an increase of $11 over the old rate, could bring in as much as $350,000 in additional revenue for the county, Boggs told the court.
The jailer said he finished the rate process calculations and paperwork mid February and began discussions with the contract officials in Washington D.C. soon after. Boggs said he was informed of the new rate’s acceptance on the day it went into effect.
“Our old rate was $54 per day and that now goes to $65,” said Boggs. “This is a substantial raise that should mean an additional $350,000 plus dollars to the county per year based on current population numbers.”
While that money doesn’t go directly into the county’s general fund, it is money that stays in the jail fund, Boggs explained, so money doesn’t have to come out of the county’s general fund for jail related expenses.
“Taxpayers are always the winners when we can secure additional revenue by doing the work we do,” Boggs said. “I am very pleased with the increase as they had a lower number in mind until after I did our calculations and entered negotiation.”
Rena Collins, business operations manager for the jail, said many counties will pay outside agencies or consultants to negotiate their rate renewals. But doing so, she said, can cost them a sizable percentage of the raise their county gets for up to a year or more. She said the Carter County Jail’s process of doing that themselves keeps more of those funds in the county’s pocket.
“R.W. has done all three of the rate renewals we have been eligible for since he has been jailer,” Collins said. “It saves the county tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars. We’ve been fortunate to haves his skillset when business issues arise.”
Boggs also reported that the transportation rate has gone up as well, along with the daily per-diem for federal inmates, and contributed his organizations success with these programs to his staff.
“I have a great team working the jail and the deputies working the road doing transportation of these prisoners,” he said.
Those transportation contracts not only include those transported through contracts with the federal prison system, but transports for the U.S. Marshal and Immigration services.