Pain At The Pump Is Affecting Sheriff's Department

By: Michael Phillips Email
By: Michael Phillips Email

Gas prices are above three dollars a gallon across the region and some predict this is just the beginning.

In Breathitt County, officials say the pain at the pump is affecting how they run the sheriff's department.

The controversy started when the judge executive sent out an executive order calling for all but one of the sheriff's department's vehicles to be grounded starting Thursday.

Those prices are why Breathitt County Sheriff's Deputies can use only one car.

“The funds aren't available to support these cruisers at this time,” Judge Executive Jason Richardson said.

Breathitt County Judge Executive Jason Richardson says the gas prices are just part of the problem.

He says the other half is out of control spending by the sheriff's department.

“I've done my fair share to help and assist them, but when you keep spending and spending you have a problem,” Judge Richardson said.

Richardson says he has supported the sheriff's department's spending by giving more than double the departments budgeted funds, but after they bought several new vehicles he says enough is enough.

“It's left me wondering what's going on,” Sheriff Ray Clemons said.

Sheriff Ray Clemons says that one vehicle isn't enough to do the jobs he and his deputies have to do and as far as overspending, he says he's never seen those numbers.

“Anybody calls or anything and I'm tied up, we just got one vehicle,” Sheriff Clemons said.

He's not the only one worried, but both sheriff and judge executive say they are doing their best.

The Judge -Executive did say he will present his order at the fiscal court meeting on May 29th at 4pm.

He says if anybody has concerns that's the place they can talk about it.

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