Franklin County Leaders Question Value Of Sheriff’s Office Consultant Study

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Franklin County officials are using words like “errors, omissions, and incomplete” to describe an $89,000 study, paid for by taxpayers.

For six months, consultants jointly hired by Franklin County and the Sheriff’s Office studied everything from how deputies respond to emergencies, to who manages them on patrol.

When the county administrator asked members of the county’s office of budget and management to give their take on the study, he heard plenty.

The study suggested the need for 120 additional staff at a cost from $7-10 million.

One county official emailed that the recommendation did not take into consideration the “limitations on county resources at a time in which other elected Franklin County officials have been asked to do more with less.”

The Franklin County Commission president responded on Wednesday.

“The sheriff's office is one of the very few whose budget hasn't been cut. This is a big deal that budget has doubled over the last twelve years. We believe ourselves to be very clear with our expectations of this study, and it's come up short,” said John O’Grady.

The report is being criticized for not supporting why the changes were needed with a cost analysis.

Franklin County Sheriff Zack Scott, who is in Washington, D.C. attending two national sheriff's conventions, said the county administrator never asked for a cost analysis.

The study was also criticized because it was more than 700 pages, but didn't include an executive summary and had spelling and grammatical errors in it.