Stories like this one from today’s AJC are infuriating to me:
For all the tens of millions of dollars that taxpayers pour into the Fulton County jail every year, the lockup can’t perform the basic function of keeping inmates locked up in cells.
The 23-year-old jail has such shoddy door locks that inmates can jam them with soap, toilet paper, shards of cloth or other trash and leave their cells at will. Motor-operated sliding doors on the maximum security levels can be jimmied open with pieces of cardboard.
This year’s Fulton County budget includes $68.1 million for the jail. Since a 2006 federal court order to improve security at the overcrowded jail, the county has spent more than $50 million to house inmates elsewhere and an estimated $86 million more, including interest, to renovate the facility.
And yet, the locks on the $@^*@&! cells don’t even work properly.
Consider stories like this one as you read about Georgia Republicans’ plans to shrink Fulton County’s impact on residents’ lives on the way to breaking it up. The kind of incompetence on display at the jail demands action from someone.
*No link; for now, the story is available online only for subscribers to our iPad app or E-Edition. I’ll update this post if that changes. (The full story is now online. Also, the headline has been changed from the original “Only in Fulton County …”)
– By Kyle Wingfield