By DOTTY NIST
Walton County Administrator Larry Jones has been directed to begin discussion with Walton County Sheriff Mike Adkinson on a plan of action for the sheriff to take over operation of the county jail and animal control.
The direction took place at the Nov. 26 Walton County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) regular meeting at the Walton County Courthouse.
Since 2007 the jail has been operated under the purview of the BCC. A proposal from the Walton County Sheriff’s Office for the jail, along with animal control, to be realigned under WCSO operation was presented at the meeting.
Jones explained that the proposal had resulted from discussions between himself and the WCSO about alignment of county government functions for optimum efficiency of operations. The discussions, he noted, had previously resulted in the BCC approving return of the emergency management function from the WCSO to the BCC, which is to take effect the first of December.
Jones told the commissioners that the county was “certainly in a position to continue” to continue with the functions but that “some good points” were made in the WCSO proposal.
Current jail and animal control directors and staff were complimented on the excellent job they were doing.
The direction by the BCC for further discussion on the possible transfer of the two functions included a number of considerations brought up by the commissioners. District 4 Commissioner Sara Comander asked for more detail, for assurances that current jail and animal control employees would keep their jobs, and for an emphasis on keeping cost associated with the transfer to a minimum.
District 5 Commissioner Cindy Meadows agreed that detailed cost estimates and transparency would be essential and also asked that the WCSO provide an organizational chart for their operations.
Jones is to bring back information on the matter at a future BCC meeting.
By DOTTY NIST