Grant will fund new cameras at Clarion jail

Security will be enhanced at the Clarion County jail thanks to a safety grant.

Clarion County commissioner Wayne Brosius, the jail board chairman, announced at Friday’s jail board meeting that the county had received a $24,000 grant form PCorp, the county’s insurance provider.

Brosius said the grant will be used to tighten security at the county jail.

“About $11,000 will be used to buy new cameras and replace some of the older ones in the jail,” said Brosius.

He said the balance of the grant will be used for cameras in the courthouse and the Clarion County (Sorce) Complex.

“This will replace about 40 percent of the cameras in the jail,” said Warden Jeff Hornberger. “The new cameras will be placed in some dark places in the jail. We are excited to have these new cameras.”

Hornberger told the jail board there is a two-month delay in transferring prisoners with state sentences to a state prison.

“We are able to transfer those prisoners into the state system one day each month,” Hornberger said. “So when the court order says an inmate is to be transferred immediately that means two months.”

“When the state calls we have to project the number of prisoners we need to transfer,” said the warden, who added the jail usually has three or four inmates waiting to be transferred.

In light of several escapes, Hornberger outlined the jail’s action plan should an escape occur.

“We take every precaution to be sure that does not happen. If it does the first thing we would do is to notify 9-1-1 and local law enforcement,” Hornberger said. “Then we would call each member of the jail board.”

Hornberger said the jail did have an escape in 2006.

Hornberger told the board the jail has expended 34% of its annual budget due to excessive fuel costs earlier this year.

The jail has an average daily population of 77 inmates.