Bryan County Won't Appeal Fine

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12-19-06 Bryan County Jail Trust Authority officials decided not to appeal fines brought against the jail. The state health department originally fined the jail for more than $700,000, but a judge lowered the fine to $15,000.

In October the Health Department fined the jail for several violations including water on the floors and not enough mattresses for inmantes. Health officials originally fined the jail about $700,000 for violations ranging from water on the floors to not having enough mattresses for inmates.

County Commissioners met yesterday and through the advice of the District Attorney, decided not to appeal the lesser fine. They needed a reason why the jail shouldn't be fined, but say the problems did exist but have been corrected.

"It's going to be hard for us to stand up and say the judge was wrong in fining us $15,000 when the State Health Dept. was trying to get us for over $700,000," Ivan Kelly, Bryan Co. Commissioner, District 3 said. "So I think we did the right thing even though $15,000 is quite a bit of money for Bryan Co. at this time."

The County Commissioners say they don't know how they will pay for the fine, but the Attorney General will work out the details. They hope for a situation where the money from the fine will go directly back into improving the jail.