Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hernando, CCA reach agreement over disputed jail equipment

BROOKSVILLE — Officials with Hernando County and Corrections Corporation of America agreed late Wednesday on who owns most of the equipment and furnishings at the county jail, which CCA is vacating next month.

The agreement avoids legal action the county had threatened against the company, which has run the jail for 22 years.

The County Commission on Tuesday had set a 5 p.m. Wednesday deadline for an agreement or the county was going to sue. Hour by hour negotiations over the terms of the agreement continued throughout the day, according to Jean Rags, acting county administrator while David Hamilton is out on furlough.

"We've got an agreement,'' Rags said about an hour before the deadline arrived.

Sheriff Richard Nugent is taking over the jail at the end of August, but time was running out to make the transition smooth with the inventory questions unsettled.

On Tuesday, commissioners discussed whether to end negotiations over the remaining disputed items and go to court to stop CCA from removing property.

Chairman John Druzbick expressed concern that CCA had threatened to begin moving items out of the facility next week, and he worried that needed security devices might disappear putting the jail staff, inmates and the community at risk.

A divided commission voted to give the sides one more day to try to reach an amicable conclusion with Druzbick and Commissioner Dave Russell voting no.

After Tuesday's meeting, CCA official Natasha Metcalf e-mailed the county to say that there had been a misunderstanding and CCA had no intention of taking out anything critical to the day-to-day operation of the facility until the contract ends at the end of August.

Negotiations began in earnest.

On Wednesday, all parties agreed to a list of items that CCA owns and can take out of the facility at any time. But everything else falls under another portion of the agreement.

CCA will not remove any other items from the jail until the county's takeover late next month. At that point, the items that belong to CCA that the company plans to leave and the county plans to use will be appraised so that the county can reimburse CCA.

Items that belong to CCA that the county doesn't want must leave with CCA, Rags said.

Ownership of some items, such as the much-talked-about $30,000 dishwasher, are still in dispute.

The agreement does not speak to the still ongoing debate over how much of the jail repairs and upgrading is the financial responsibility of CCA and how much is the county's responsibility.

In an earlier volley of proposed inventory solutions, CCA tried to tie the topics, but the county attorneys were unwilling to do that and commissioners were not interested.

Druzbick said he was thrilled that negotiations had been successful.

"Did I want to have an injunction and have it get to that point? No,'' he said. But he noted that he wanted to be sure that the county's interests were looked after and no one would be put at risk if needed equipment were hauled away.

Barbara Behrendt can be reached at behrendt@sptimes.com or (352) 848-1434.

Hernando, CCA reach agreement over disputed jail equipment 07/28/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 28, 2010 7:23pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Buddy Brew Coffee to open downtown Tampa location

    Business

    TAMPA — Buddy Brew Coffee plans to open a new location in downtown Tampa at Park Tower. The specialty coffee craft roaster, which was founded in 2010, has five other locations throughout Tampa including the Oxford Exchange, Sarasota, Hyde Park Village and Terminal F inside the Tampa International Airport.

    A cappuccino is displayed at Buddy Brew in Tampa in January 2017. [CHARLIE KAIJO | Times]
  2. What you might have missed in the second episode of the Bucs on 'Hard Knocks'

    Bucs

    We're back for another episode of The Annotated Hard Knocks, trying to find behind-the-scenes insights and things you might have missed in Tuesday's second episode of "Hard Knocks," following the Bucs in …

    As the crowd recognized him and got loud, Jameis Winston jumped up and down in celebration. [GREG AUMAN | Times]
  3. Review: 'The Defenders' brings out the best in Marvel's unlikeliest heroes

    Blogs

    The ties that bind Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist run deep. But they're just starting to figure all that out in The Defenders.

    Mike Colter, Scott Glenn, Finn Jones, Krysten Ritter and Charlie Cox in The Defenders.
  4. Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson can't keep 'The Hitman's Bodyguard' on-target

    Movies

    The Hitman's Bodyguard is an assault tank on semi-automatic pilot, spraying jokes and bullets with only the ammo consistently hitting its targets. The irresistible teaming of Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson might be even funnier if they missed once in a while.

    Samuel L. Jackson, left, and Ryan Reynolds star in "The Hitman's Bodyguard." (Lionsgate)
  5. Hillsborough leaders ask for patience as multiple schools still suffer from broken air conditioners

    K12

    TAMPA — Hillsborough County Public Schools Superintendent Jeff Eakins and his facilities chief appealed to parents Wednesday to be patient as the district works through chronic air conditioning problems — and to advocate for more state funding.

    Hillsborough County school superintendent Jeff Eakins says air conditioning problems at multiple schools are a "major concern" for the district. [SKIP O'ROURKE  |  Times]