JOLIET – The Will County Sheriff’s Department could be adding new officers in order to alleviate the cost of overtime pay, especially at the Adult Detention Facility.
The sheriff’s department made a presentation to the Will County Committee of the Whole on Jan. 11 regarding the costs of overtime pay and the extra hours worked to transport inmates to the hospital, man suicide watches and covering vacations.
In 2017, sheriff’s deputies worked over 41,000 overtime hours. A 2010 study found that the department would need an extra 26 officers to be hired.
If the department were to hire 16 new officers, it would cost about
$1.3 million. The presentation shows that in 2017, the cost of overtime totaled around $1.9 million.
Currently, there are three command staff assigned to the Adult Detention Facility as well as 215 deputy correctional officers and 23 deputy correctional supervisors.
In 2017, the number of admissions to the facility per month ranged from 627 to 847. On a daily basis, the average population is more than 700 inmates.
Overtime also is offered by seniority per the union contract, which means that higher paid employees usually are the ones working overtime, according to the presentation.
The department also has attempted to reduce costs through closing a holding center in Crete in 2015, changing the method of inmate debt collection to increase debt recovery rate, and replacing in-person training with computer based training, among other measures.