County’s dentention center to house juveniles

By Chelle Delaney: Quay County Sun

It’s cheaper to keep problem kids at home, say county officials who are re-establishing juvenile jail cells at the Quay County Detention Center.

And housing other county’s juveniles at $120 per day, as well, in those jail cells is expected to bring in revenue and reduce the detention center’s overall costs, said Tony Elbario, center administrator.

The center plans to open its juvenile unit by June 1, Elbario said.

The county approved converting a section of its detention center to hold juveniles late last month.

Since July 2005, when the county closed its detention center to juveniles, the city and the county have borne the costs of transporting juveniles to detention facilities in the region and housing them there, Elbario, said.

At the time, it was more cost effective to send juveniles out of the county, Elbario said.

Last year, the county spent $42,991 to house its juveniles in other facilities, Elbario said.

But, the county’s costs will rise to about $121 per day from between $85 and $95 per diem for each juvenile who is sent out of county, Elbario said.

“If we are going to spend money, we ought to do it here in Quay County,”