In order to improve safety for deputies and inmates at the Butler County Jail, the sheriff's department has requested a new surveillance system. Cameras for the judicial center holding areas were also requested.
During Tuesday's Butler County commission meeting, the commissioners received and accepted bids submitted by two equipment vendors.
"I think it's very important for the jail to have this new system," said the sheriff's department business manager Dennis Phillips.
He said the current system is outdated, and sometimes requires costly repairs.
"That's one reason to get the new system," said Phillips. "Repairs get more and more expensive."
Commissioner Mike Wheeler asked if the Butler County Jail has policies and procedures in place to avoid problems similar to those Sedgwick County has recently experienced. In June, a Sedgwick County detention deputy was arrested and now faces charges of sexual misconduct.
"We do have an in-house detective," said Captain Floyd Hunt. "Inmates can file complaints with him. We try to stay on top of it."
"These camera systems, if they work properly and if they are placed properly, it can eliminate 99 percent
of the problems," added Phillips.
The sheriff's department staff will evaluate and compare the bids, then bring back a recommendation to the commissioners for approval.
In other business, the commissioners:
• received Susan Gardiner and Bernie Spradling for a presentation about the Bethlehem House.
• approved the acknowledgment of the final FY2013 Kansas Department of Corrections funding amount for the 13th District Community Corrections agency.
• approved a proposal for milling work for the proposed overlay project on SW 70th from Andover Road to Santa Fe Lake Road.
• approved a proposal for leasing with the option to purchase a road reclaimer for road reclamation work on NW River Valley Road and for future road reclamation projects.
• approved a right-of-way dedication for additional road right-of-way required for the Whitewater River
bridge replacement project on Thunder Road west of Augusta.
• held a work session to discuss the quarterly investment of idle funds report.
• held a work session to discuss the quarterly financial report.