By Kevin Jefferies
Hunt County – A plan to privatize the Hunt County Jail took steps forward after action by the Hunt County Commissioner's Court yesterday. The firm CiviGenics Inc. has been given 30 days to present an in-depth proposal for taking over managerial operations at the jail. CiviGenics currently operates in 15 states and runs several jails in Texas.
Last year, the Hunt county jail came under fire after staffing shortages, several inmate escapes, and one incident of inappropriate relationship between a jailer and an inmate. The Texas Commission on Jail Standards found the facility to be in non-compliance with state standards. A jail in Texarkana run by CiviGenics has had similar problems with escapes and one officer arrested for having sex with a female inmate. Other counties in Texas with jails run by CiviGenics reportedly are very happy with the job the firm accomplishes, however.
A representative for the firm told the Commissioner's Court that a 90 percent workable deal should be ready within the next three weeks.