Fewer inmates, bigger savings for Metro Jail - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Fewer inmates, bigger savings for Metro Jail

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The number of people in the Metro Jail is at its lowest point in a year and a half. The number of people in the Metro Jail is at its lowest point in a year and a half.
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

Fewer inmates means big savings for the Madison County Jail, and in turn, taxpayers. The number of people in the Metro Jail is at its lowest point in a year and a half. With less than 900 inmates right now, Madison County Jail Chief Deputy Steve Morrison said the jail is able to run more efficiently. Maybe more importantly, he said they are also able to save millions every year.

"We still provide the same programs and day-to-day activities that we have, but we are saving additional dollars," said Chief Morrison.

"When the population is down like it is now, we not only save money, we save staff timing," he continued.

County Commission Chairman Dale Strong said the lower numbers can be attributed to a collaborative effort between  judges, the District Attorney, police and other county and city agencies. He said the DA's office is more aggressive and moving cases more quickly through the court system. There are also more people going through diversion programs in the county.

"If we have someone who is a threat to society, that is where we want them. We want them at the Madison County Metro Jail. But, for those who are not a threat to society, we have to speed up this process and make sure we are not holding someone there and making the taxpayers pay," said Strong.

Strong said the goal is to get those non-violent offenders to eventually reenter the workplace and contribute to society.

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