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REGISTER VIEWPOINT: Commitment locked in for success at jail

Commentary • Jun 30, 2010 at 1:59 AM

The Erie County sheriff's office -- and particularly retired Sandusky police officer Mike Frank -- have a lot to be proud about. The long-standing problem of overcrowding at the Erie County Jail has been eased considerably in the past few months thanks to the electronic monitoring systems that allow some defendants to serve their sentences without having a bed at the jail.

Frank has been heading up the effort, and for the first time in more than a dozen years the jail has been consistently under capacity for a sustained period of time. The program has been helped by a state grant, but what has helped the most is the sustained commitment to make it work. And it makes sense to sustain that commitment with, or without, grant money to fund it.

In the end, local taxpayers end up spending big money to house jail inmates in other jail facilities when the Erie County Jail is overcapacity. Over the years, those taxpayers have spent, literally, hundreds of thousands of dollars renting jail space to house Erie County inmates.

It's good to see progress has been made. We hope the commitment, and the success that it creates, continues.

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