Jax Co. Exec says budget doesn't include enough for jail improvements

Posted at 8:22 PM, Dec 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-15 21:22:47-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Jackson County Executive Frank White, Jr. called the Legislature's approved budget "spiteful and "irresponsible."

The Legislature approved the budget 6-3. 

White claims it leaves no funding for safety and security repairs to the Jackson County Detention Center and no funding for salary increases fo4r entry-level corrections officers. 

The jail has faced a lot of criticism recently after a series of security issues involving beatings of staff, treatment of inmates and security flaws.

White's full statement can be read below: 

“It’s spiteful and irresponsible when some members of the Legislature take joy in eliminating staff members, some who have been here decades and worked hard on behalf of the taxpayers. Those same legislators say their decision to cut jobs is to save taxpayer dollars, but they’re adding jobs to their budget.

Despite the political games by some members of the Legislature, I want all County Associates to know that this fight is not over. I will fight for our County Associates because they fight every day for Jackson County. I would like to commend the three legislators who voted against the budget and stood up today for our Associates as well.

While we are still reviewing the Legislative budget, we have already determined:

  • There is no funding for necessary safety and security repairs to the jail;
  • There is no funding for salary increases for entry-level corrections officers despite the Legislature’s commitment to do so; and
  • There is a $500,000 increase to the Legislative budget.

I have taken a lot heat from many elected officials about what’s going on at the jail. I have worked tirelessly with them to make repairs and improvements. With this budget, it is clear of Legislature’s unwillingness to work with my administration. The Legislature has impeded us every step of the way from improving the quality of life for Jackson County citizens and it’s time the taxpayers know who is truly working for them, instead of against them.

My staff will work diligently to mitigate the damage done by the Legislature. I will do everything in my power to protect taxpayer dollars as the voters elected me to do.”