CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia Secretary of Military Affairs and Public Safety Jeff Sandy says a bill before the Senate Government Organization Committee would save the government money and prevent “turf battles” between various agencies because of the elimination of certain offices and sharing responsibilities between state and local governments.
The House of Delegate passed House Bill 4338 last week, which would establish the powers of law enforcement agencies, puts forward related rules and regulations and establishes new rules for inmates. The legislation also would create the Bureau of Prisons and Jails, Bureau of Juvenile Services and the Regional Jail and Corrections Authority Board.
Sandy said with this legislation, the state could save millions of dollars annually; the state would be responsible for per-diem for data sentencing and capping regional jail per-diem spending at $48.3 million, the latter of which would save counties $23 million a year.
“It was a big day for the counties, and that’s what this is all about. Working as a team,” he said. “The counties and the state working together for the betterment.”
Sandy said as a result of agencies being eliminated under the bill, the state would save money as well as itself from headaches of dealing with government offices fight against each other.
“Turf battles is something that the Justice administration wants to eliminate,” he said. “There is no need for Juvenile Services to compete with Corrections, Corrections to compete with Regional Jail. There was no need for it.”
Sandy added Gov. Jim Justice wants to run the government like a business, and this is a result of that belief.
“This is simple, basic business practice 101,” he said.
The Senate passed the pay raise bill for corrections officers last week, which was amended to include parole officers. If the House of Delegates concurs with the changes, officers would see a pay increase of $6,000 over three years.