Tulsa County Jail Gets Extra Time To Pay Overdue Bills
TULSA COUNTY, Oklahoma - The Tulsa County Jail is two months behind on medical and food bills. It's part of the continuing financial trouble in the sheriff's office.
Tuesday, two big bills for January were due, but the sheriff's office doesn't have the money to pay them.
The county budget board heard, Tuesday, the sheriff's office got some more time to pay some overdue bills, which are two months behind.
Acting Sheriff Michelle Robinette said she's going over everything in the jail budget, looking for savings.
"I'm confident we're on the right track," she said. "We're continuing to look at everything we're doing. We're looking at the money going out, everything we stopped doing, and with the administration leaving and those positions unfilled, we have that income as well."
The immediate problem is the jail spends about $400,000 each month on medical care and $200,000 on food. The $600,000 per month bill is now two months behind - that's $1.2 million the sheriff's office is trying to pay.
The previous bill was paid, in part, with $300,000 of longevity pay for deputies - sparking a protest from them.
The county extended a million dollar loan, but it's still not enough.
County Commissioner Karen Keith believes Robinette is getting the finances in order.
"These ongoing efforts are going to put us in a better light that will help in the new fiscal year. And I think you'll see some other changes too," Keith said.
One big change is the mothballing of the new Sheriff's Office training center. Construction was stopped to save money - so it can be spent elsewhere in the sheriff's office, including the jail.
The training center was to be named for former sheriff, Stanley Glanz, but that’s no longer the case. In fact, it may never be a training center at all.