NEWTON, Kansas – State funding cuts are impacting some community corrections offices around the state. The Harvey County Sheriff’s Office is using it’s limited staff to help.
Harvey County Sheriff T. Walton says his office is trying to fill the gap, after community corrections lost $14,000 in grant funding. Staff will be cut from full-time to part-time. Now, the sheriff is using his detectives and investigators to help transport juveniles.
Sheriff Walton says they’ve transported Children in Need of Care (CINC) before, but now, they’re taking them outside the county, like the holding center in Reno County. Then, someone from the sheriff’s office also has to transport the juveniles from the holding center to court. It puts a strain on Walton’s department, which is already understaffed.
“That in turn causes a problem because if I have an active investigation going on, now that takes a slow down because we have to do transports or if my under sheriff is involved in some kind of administrative situations, that has to come to a halt,” said Walton.
Walton says they’ve had more court orders this year than at any other time in the sheriff’s office.
“More cases are being presented to the county attorney than he’s ever had before. He issues warrants. We’re all over the place. We’ve been in Chicago, Texas, Colorado, Louisiana, Arkansas bringing these people in,” Walton said.
The sheriff says this puts stress on their department, but it’s something they have to deal with.