By Rich Wicks | Times Vedette

During the regular meeting of the Guthrie County Board of Supervisors on April 30, the supervisors considered fiscal year 2023-2024 budget amendments for the Sheriff’s department and for the supervisors’ department.

Sheriff Marty Arganbright summarized the budgetary items that are in need of amendment and the reasons. Supervisor Maggie Armstrong suggested a method of keeping a closer eye on departmental budgets.

“I think the other thing we can do is…do some quarterly check-ins on budget… I think having some of those check-ins quarterly will be beneficial when we get to this process this time next year,” Armstrong said.

Supervisors and Sheriff Marty Arganbright discussed the status of the out-of-county inmates being housed at Guthrie County’s jail and how this impacts the budget. Supervisor Mike Dickson questioned whether or not the practice is benefitting the county.

“We need to sit down and figure this all out, because when I start looking at these numbers, I don’t necessarily see that we’re making a whole lot of money housing out-of-county inmates,” Dickson said. “I mean, we’ve had to add jailers because of that.”

“You would have to come over and see how it all works,” Arganbright said. “If an inmate is being brought in to be booked in, the jailer does all that, but the arresting officer helps.”

“I think that it’s not necessarily the board’s job to determine how the structure of the Sheriff’s department runs,” Armstrong said. “So, if we feel that expenses are too high, then we can ask for more money.”

Arganbright and the supervisors discussed the possibility of raising the rate charged for out-of-county inmates. The rate is currently $60 per day.

“I don’t have a problem with raising it,” Arganbright said.

The consensus was to work on clearly defining revenues and expenses related to housing out-of-county inmates so the Sheriff’s department can make data-driven decisions on whether or not to increase the rate.

The supervisors and County Auditor Dani Fink reviewed the budget for the supervisors’ department and the reasons for some overages in expenses. The supervisors set a budget amendment public hearing for May 21 at 9:30 a.m.

Jeremy Cooper was approved as the representative to the E911 board.

The next regular meeting of the supervisors will be Tuesday, May 7. The public is welcome. Attendees may participate in person or by calling 323-792-6123 and inputting conference ID 547029216#.