Jail in southern OR to release 40 inmates due to cuts - KPTV - FOX 12

Jail in southern OR to release 40 inmates due to cuts

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The Josephine County Adult Jail is getting ready to release 40 inmates because of budget cuts.

Those inmates are expected to be freed by 10:30 a.m. Wednesday.

The jail is lowering its capacity to 60 inmates because of a $7.5 million budget shortfall.

That shortfall forced the jail to reduce its staff from 38 to 18. The jail is releasing the 40 inmates to keep the jail population at a safe number for employees.

The jail commander and sergeants decided which 40 inmates to release.

Among them are people convicted of third-degree rape, fourth-degree assault, third-degree robbery, menacing, escape, resisting arrest, felon in possession of a firearm, third-degree sodomy and endangering the welfare of a minor.

The Josephine County Sheriff's Office says that half of  the remaining 60 jail beds will be reserved for federal contracts. Those contracts bring in about $1 million dollars a year in revenue, according to deputies.

Of the 30 beds that remain in local control, about 20 will be take up by Measure 11 inmates. Law dictates that Measure 11 inmates must be held in jail because of the seriousness of their charges.

The jail had originally planned to release 36 inmates, but said that additional arrests made on Tuesday night forced them to release 40.

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