CARTER COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL) — The Carter County Jail remains in limbo in regards to its certification from the Tennessee Corrections Institute. That will be determined in December, but until then, Sheriff Mike Fraley is working to correct any issues.
Fraley says they have addressed all maintenance problems but still need to hire more corrections officers. The sheriff’s office will be holding another Civil Service examination next week to find qualified candidates. Fraley said the exam last month provided a decent pool.
“We had 18 test; 16 passed,” said Fraley. “Out of that, we have hired eight so far, and we still are putting the word out there. We have some new cards made up to hand out.”
To entice new hires, Fraley said he is continuing to work with the county commission to offer increased pay to both new hires and current staff.
“The county commission is working diligently to try to get the pay up there to a livable wage,” said Fraley.
Fraley said he met with the Financial Management Committee on Monday and will meet with the Budget Committee next week. He said one of his goals is to not only increase new hire pay but to secure pay raises across the board for those who have remained on staff over the years.
Twenty-four positions at the jail and 19 patrol positions still need to be filled according to Fraley.
Although there are still gaps to be filled, Fraley said they have made significant progress.
“For the first time in the last year and a half, we submitted no overtime into the budget, which is to me huge,” said Fraley. “These men and women have been working sometimes seven days in a row and having one day off and having to go back. Now that we’re starting to feel the shift set up, they’re starting to get a little bit of breathing room, and I’m not going to let up now.”