In Jim Killinger's Own Words...

    Below are a summary of the few county jail ad hoc work group committee reports
    obtained through a Right To Know request last year and published here as part of
    an expanded commentary piece, "Al's RTK answer that took the cake."  

    It is reprinted here by request from readers who heard about the recent request
    from the jail work group's architectural leader to "talk facts." Here are some of the
    facts, in his own very words.

    From the architectural team leader to his group members, he wrote in a report
    dated April 18, 2013: "We have partnered with Fay-Penn and the economic
    development council to assist us in locating possible sites. We met with them in
    March and again on April 12th and hope to meet again in May. We would like 10-20
    acres with available utilities so we have the room for future expansion with
    facilities on site for programs such as job development, substance abuse and
    mental health issues."

    In a report dated January 17, 2013, the architectural team leader wrote to his work
    group, "Eric Tupper, a contact person from an architectural firm in Pittsburgh
    named Piper, Obrian and Herr, has been to our county looking at our problems
    and doing studies regarding a new prison at our current location and at the
    reserve center along Route 21... He is sure both locations will work." Meanwhile,
    5 days later...

    From a report dated January 22, 2013: Meeting with architectural team members
    and construction compant DCK, formerly known as The Dick Corporation, in
    nearby Elizabeth. A report from the team leader to his architecture work group
    members stated, "A new facility behind the court house can be constructed,
    however, it also would be very cost prohibative due to land development, a flood
    plan, pedestrian and vehicle traffic, parking and other issues."  Meanwhile, that
    same very day...

    In another report dated January 22, 2013, the architectural group leader wrote to
    document the first prison work group meeting on November 8, 2012. In the report,
    he wrote on January 22, 2013, "Currently, two locations are being discussed, the
    current location and the reserve center... Both locations will work."

    In a report dated January 24, 2013, from the architectural team leader, this is
    written: "The team suggested at least a 500 bed facility at this point."  

    What was true then, what was true 7 months ago, when "Al's RTK answer that
    took the cake" was written, and, more sadly, what is still true today in March of
    2014, is the 2013 commentary conclusion:

    Even with the increase in population that county leaders stress, we're still
    shaking our heads here wondering how they guesstimate wisely. The county has
    no answer to our RTK question of how many non-violent prisoners we have who
    qualify for the Day Reporting Center (or treatment court, veterans' court or work
    release) instead of jail.

    Shouldn't that be known to decide what the county needs, as opposed to what it
    may want?

    5 Mar 14
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