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Mount Vernon, Knox County, Ohio

By Cheryl Splain, KnoxPages.com Reporter

MOUNT VERNON — Payment for a service that used to be covered will now become the responsibility of the county. Knox County Sheriff David Shaffer told the county commissioners on Thursday that mandated mental health assessments for inmates who are sentenced to 14 or more days of jail time will no longer be covered by a grant through Behavioral Health Partners.

Shaffer said that his office will either have to contract with BHP for 15 to 20 hours a week for the assessments, which would cost around $339, or hire his own personnel. From November 2016 through May 2017, the BHP counselor working in the jail completed 216 14-day assessments totaling $30,240.

Shaffer said that he has talked with the superintendents of East Knox and Centerburg school districts regarding a school resource officer. "Both schools seem to be on board with it," he said. The plan is to split the SRO's time between the two schools.

In the area of cash flow, Capt. Jay Sheffer told the commissioners that CORSA (County Risk Sharing Authority, a liability risk-sharing group through the County Commissioners Association of Ohio) will reimburse the county for some officer training programs up to a maximum of $2,800. Each training program costs around $475.

Shaffer said the security system upgrade is almost complete and has gone well.

The current jail population is 75. The 62 males include two federal prisoners and five from Lawrence County. Thirteen are female.

The meeting adjourned into executive session to discuss security issues.


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