September 22, 2021

Supervisors support amended inmate phone contract

Phone calls made at the jail will produce more revenue for the sheriff’s office.

The Jasper County Board of Supervisors approved an amendment to the agreement between the sheriff’s office and Inmate Calling Solutions that will increase the sheriff’s office’s gross revenue from calls placed within its jail.

Revenue for the sheriff’s office will be increased from a 20 percent cut of phone call revenue to 50 percent.

“This amendment will increase the sheriff’s office monthly revenue from the phone service to around $1,200 a month,” Jasper County Sheriff John Halferty said.

The new agreement between the sheriff’s office and Inmate Calling Solutions will last until Nov. 29, 2026, with optional one year renewals after that.

The supervisors also approved a Governor’s Traffic Safety Bureau contract, which provides the sheriff’s office with $12,400. Halferty said the funds will pay for overtime for traffic safety enforcement as well as a traffic speed trailer. The trailer informs drivers of their speeds, with the hopes of preventing speeding.

“Don’t worry, the trailer will not have a speed camera in it,” Halferty assured.

The supervisors also approved Polk and Jasper County’s supplemental food program cooperative agreement. The agreement, which allows Jasper County residents to participate in Polk County’s supplemental food program, has been providing food assistance to low income residents over the age of 60 for more than 30 years. The new agreement will be in effect from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, 2024.

In other business, the board of supervisors:

• Approved county road maintenance within Rock Creek State Park.

• Approved a new 30,000-gallon ammonia tank for use at a New Century FS site outside of Newton.

• Approved a construction easement and agreement for the new Jasper County administration building.

• Authorized a public hearing that will extend a three-year lease of the county farm to a five-year lease. The supervisors said the current tennant has been good about maintaining and improving the property. The public hearing is set for 9:30 a.m. Sept. 21.

Abby Knipfel

Abby "Adler" Knipfel

Journalist at Newton Daily News. Currently covering Jasper County and writing passionate opinion pieces. They/Them