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New Temporary Greene County Jail Sits Empty Due to Low Staff

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Greene County Sheriff Jim Arnott says he still needs 13 detention officers for the new temporary jail that is sitting empty in Springfield.

Construction on the four converted semi-trailers finished last month, but with staffing problems, no overflow inmates can use the 108 available beds.

The jail was turned over to Sheriff Arnott two weeks ago.

The Springfield News-Leader reports he's still working to hire more officers, but low wages are making it difficult to attract new candidates.

No timeline has been given for when the new jail will be operational, but it was built with the intention to save money.

Keeping overflow inmates is cheaper than sending inmates to other counties which is what Greene County is doing now.

The jail is being leased for $2,300 a day which started on Nov. 1.

When asked why the county didn't hold off on building the temporary jail until it could be staffed, the sheriff replied  "I can't predict how many people I'm going to lose or retain. It's hard to judge that."

Last August Arnott's detention officers were given a small raise, but he's requesting another pay restructure for the 2018 budget.

And just last month Greene County voters passed a half-cent sales tax for a 1,400-bed jail, construction has not yet started.

(Story shared by the Springfield News-Leader.  Read the original article here )


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