Grand Traverse County commissioners Wednesday accepted know-how upgrades on the Grand Traverse County Jail that can permit for RFID monitoring of inmates and outfit corrections officers with cellular gadgets that may monitor and gather jail information in actual time – a system Jail Administrator Chris Barsheff stated would shield the county towards lawsuits, enhance jail security, and save numerous workers hours spent on paperwork. Commissioners Wednesday additionally obtained the outcomes of a long-awaited wage research analyzing county positions and salaries, a report that exhibits Grand Traverse County lagging behind the market in aggressive wages and that might impression upcoming funds planning.
Barsheff offered a proposal to commissioners to enter right into a $37,396 contract – plus an $11,045 annual licensing and upkeep price – with Guardian RFID to implement a brand new inmate monitoring system on the jail. RFID – or radio frequency identification – know-how makes use of radio waves to establish folks or objects. Sensible labels, embedded on an inmate’s wristband or on a tag positioned on a wall, equivalent to subsequent to a cell or by the jail cafeteria, emit waves and could be learn by cellular gadgets carried by jail corrections officers.
Barhseff stated the system would permit jail workers to “gather and doc remark information in actual time throughout a variety of actions to incorporate cell checks, safety checks, inmate actions, headcount counts, remedy distribution, meal distribution, and extra.” Along with monitoring inmate actions, officers can use their cellular gadgets to take images and immediately add information. If an inmate complains in regards to the portion measurement of a meal, for instance, or refuses to take remedy, the officer can take a photograph of the meal or observe the remedy refusal and have that information immediately uploaded to the cloud. That information is searchable, that means Barsheff would have the ability to see what number of inmates on a specific shift refused remedy or observe the place every inmate was situated in an emergency scenario.
Barsheff stated the system would change the cumbersome paperwork system at the moment used to log information, requiring officers to spend hours at their desk as an alternative of out within the jail, the place their presence is extra helpful and a deterrence to jail incidents. “It’s going so as to add great worth to the jail and our operations,” he stated. He famous the RFID system would additionally improve accountability for jail workers, exhibiting for instance if an officer was behind in timing on head counts. Suicide checks would even be logged electronically. With Grand Traverse County already experiencing a number of previous inmate suicides and suicide makes an attempt and lawsuits associated to these instances, higher information monitoring will assist the county mitigate future litigation, Barsheff stated.
Working with county directors and finance workers, Barsheff stated he was in a position to establish funds throughout the current jail funds to pay for the know-how ugprades. He additionally famous the RFID system isn’t tied to a specific constructing, so if a brand new Grand Traverse County Jail is ever constructed, the tags and scanning gadgets could be migrated over to that new facility. With commissioners unanimously approving the proposal 5-0 Wednesday (Commissioners Penny Morris and Betsy Coffia had been absent), Barsheff stated the know-how can be ordered and certain delivered by the tip of December, with full implementation beginning in January. County commissioners additionally accepted a separate proposal from Barsheff Wednesday to improve the jail’s information administration software program.
Additionally at their Wednesday assembly, county commissioners obtained the long-awaited results of a countywide wage study accomplished by consulting agency Administration Advisory Group (MAG) Worldwide analyzing each county place and its wage, evaluating wages to each private and non-private sector opponents. Comparisons included a number of different Michigan counties in addition to native entities just like the Metropolis of Traverse Metropolis, Traverse Metropolis Space Public Colleges, and Northwestern Michigan School. MAG consultant Carolyn Lengthy offered a short discovering of the agency’s findings to commissioners, noting that MAG had carried out worker orientation periods, administered job evaluation questionnaires to workers, gathered and in contrast compensation information, developed revised classification and compensation buildings and plans, and beneficial modifications to the county to “assist an internally equitable compensation system.”
In keeping with Lengthy, Grand Traverse County is behind the market in wages in all three tiers measured. These included a low finish of the wage scale (or a minimal worth, the place the county was behind by 8.95 p.c), a center tier vary (the place the county was behind by 13.65 p.c), and a most tier vary (the place the county was behind by 16.45 p.c). General, 46 p.c of Grand Traverse County jobs are greater than 10 p.c under the market wage common. Getting inside 10 p.c of the market common “is taken into account aggressive,” in line with Lengthy, although she famous the county’s aim ought to be to get inside 5 p.c.
Lengthy stated MAG would work with the county on attempting to “to search out an equitable transition plan emigrate workers from the present pay construction” to a proposed new construction that will nonetheless replicate the fiscal constraints of the county. The aim can be to search out an method that’s “reasonably priced and sustainable,” she stated. Grand Traverse County has skilled excessive turnover lately, with the common worker staying lower than 5 years and the common turnover charge at 15.5 p.c (different counties are typically within the 12 p.c vary). County Human Sources Director Donna Kinsey previously told The Ticker she wanted to keep that percentage under 10 percent, and that departing workers cited wages because the number-one motive they left Grand Traverse County.
County Administrator Nate Alger stated he deliberate to carry a closed session with commissioners and authorized counsel on the board’s December 15 assembly to debate the wage research, as any potential wage will increase for county workers must be thought-about within the context of union contracts which might be already in place or at the moment being renegotiated. Commissioners may come out of that closed session and vote on a beneficial plan of action to pursue for implementing among the research’s suggestions. Commissioners Wednesday signaled that they had been critical about attempting to enact change and never simply put the research on a shelf.
“This (report) is massive and it’s quite a bit to dig by…it’s 123 pages,” stated Commissioner Darryl Nelson. “We’re going to dig into this and are going to do the work. We didn’t undergo all this simply to place it within the background.”
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