The Kentucky River Regional Jail Authority convened for its first meeting yesterday at the old Perry County courthouse after the members were approved by the judge
executives from Perry and Knott Counties. The authority will oversee the operations of the newly formed regional jail, as well as hire an administrator to oversee the day to day operations of the facility.
The Perry County Fiscal Court voted yesterday to approve Judge Executive Denny Ray Noble's choices for the Perry County representatives for the East Kentucky Regional Jail Authority. Hoover Haynes, Fitz Steele, and Robert Terry were voted to sit upon the regional jail authority as representatives of Perry County. Haynes was voted for a two year term on the board, after which he can be rehired for another four years. Steele and Terry were voted in for four year terms. Knott County Judge Executive Donnie Newsome appointed Josh Feltner and Macarthur Combs as representatives of Knott County. Perry Jailer Mac Feltner is also a member of the board by order of a statute that states that the jailer of the host county of the facility is automatically a member of the board.
The Kentucky River Regional Jail Authority conducted business as well approving the appointments of board chairman, secretary, and administrator on an interim basis. For board chairman, Hoover Haynes was appointed on an interim basis. Josh Feltner will be serving a dual role on an interim basis as both board secretary and interim administrator. The board will vote to hire a new administrator at a later date.
According to Vince Gabbard of Ross Sinclair, the financial advisors to Perry and Knott, who mediated the first meeting, the jobs of the authority will be to, "Make sure the jail is ran in an efficient manner, and that the jail serves the people the way it is supposed to."
As for the current employees of the jail, the board voted to adopt a resolution that will make each current employee of both Knott and Perry to be able to reapply for their jobs. Judge Executive Denny Ray Noble remarked that some of those positions will have to be lost, but that when the new addition is completed more employees will have to be hired. The applications for the current employees will be handed out today by each county.
Funding for the regional jail will first come by both counties involved, who will together pay in $411,000 in seed money to get the operation running from the start. The board will also be able to apply for federal prisoners to receive new funding, and Judge Noble remarked that state prisoners will be brought back to the jail as well. Both federal and state prisoners can bring in more funding to jail.
The new regional jail is now a facility independent of the county. The board will be the operating entity for the jail as of July 1st, and all responsibility will be handled by the jail authority.