Putnam County Sheriff’s Department work crews are gearing back up to full speed after slowing services during the pandemic.
Sheriff Eddie Farris said that it’s been hard to get full service back because court closures have slowed the number of inmates sentenced.
“In order for somebody to be eligible to go out and work on a work crew, the first thing you got to do is be sentenced,” Farris said. “We can’t let people go out that don’t have a sentence. In other words, if they’re awaiting a trial or have things pending in court, then they’re not allowed to go out on work crew. The second thing is no violent offenders. ”
Farris said that as things begin to pick back up, they will hopefully be able to continue their efforts to keep the community clean, especially because it benefits the inmates as well by giving them fresh air and a chance for “extra credit.”
Farris said this is an important issue to the department because litter has ramped up in Putnam County, with work crews picking up thousands of pounds of trash a year. He said that the issue has gotten to the point where the sheriff’s office will most likely start giving out citations to curb the problem.
“It’s just absolutely ridiculous,” Farris said. “People are throwing trash out and I assume, I’m just guessing, that they know that we’re picking trash up so they think it’s okay to throw it out. But at some point, we’re going to have to start addressing that and start writing citations because it’s just unnecessary and it creates a lot of work. We certainly don’t mean picking it up and keeping it cleaned up but to pick up after individuals throwing it out on purpose that’s something we shouldn’t have to do.”