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State may help with crowding solution

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By Damon Lawrence

The Roane County Commission has approved a plan that officials hope will keep the county jail in good standing with the Tennessee Corrections Institute.
The jail is certified to hold 174 inmates.
The population was 194 when TCI Detention Facility Specialist Denise Messer inspected it on July 2. Messer recommended certification with a plan of action.
Earlier this month, the commission passed a resolution that calls for the county to participate in the TCI county corrections partnership initiative.
“They’ve got a guy from TCI and a guy from CTAS (County Technical Assistance Service) that will basically assist us in coming up with solutions to alleviate the overcrowding,” Roane County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Tim Phillips said.
The TCI Board of Control will meet on Sept. 4 in Nashville, when it could vote to certify the jail.
“Past history shows if a county is willing to do the county corrections partnership and let CTAS and TCI help, I hear they’re pretty successful,” Phillips said.
The jail, on Third Street in Kingston, has been dealing with overcrowding issues for months. The population the day of a May 2 inspection was 188.
Phillips described the overcrowding situation as “about the same” when asked about it on Monday.
“We got 190 people today,” he said.