County To Relocate Women's Correctional Facility Through Regionalized Plan
(Clarksboro, NJ) -- Gloucester County will be regionalizing its Women's Correctional facility with Camden, Salem and Cumberland Counties beginning the week of August 23, 2010 announced Freeholder Director Stephen M. Sweeney and Freeholder Frank J. DiMarco today.
Freeholder Director Sweeney said, "Regionalizing correctional services among counties makes good fiscal sense and is good policy. We have had a positive experience with regionalizing the juvenile facility and anticipate a smooth transition with the Womens facility."
Sweeney said, "Camden, Salem and Cumberland Counties have the space to house these women inmates and provide them with the identical service, there is no reason for Gloucester County to spend $2.8 million a year to duplicate that."
The county's women's facility is now located in Clarksboro and has an average population of between 40 and 50 inmates. Through a shared services agreement with Camden, Salem, and Cumberland Counties, there would be ample space for the county to send all of its female incarcerated population.
Gloucester County anticipates a considerable decrease in costs through personnel and operational savings. With a reduction of up to 16 staff, operational costs and capital expenses the conservative projected savings to the county taxpayers is $1 million annually.
Freeholder Frank J. DiMarco, liaison to the Department of Corrections, said the time was right to enter into shared services agreements with other counties to provide facilities for women offenders.
DiMarco said, "We have a solid relationship with all these counties and I feel strongly we are at the right place at the right time to be moving ahead with a regionalized facility."
"Our counties share many services together now that save our taxpayers a lot of money. We have regionalized medical examiner services, a shared mental health administrator and soon a regionalized facility for women's offenders," said Freeholder DiMarco.
Camden County Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli said, "The partnerships that we have forged in regionalized services are a benefit to our taxpayers. We are confident that this partnership will be successful for us and we look forward to continue the trend of Southern New Jersey leading the state in shared and regionalized services."
Freeholder Director Lee Ware of Salem County stated, "A regionalized womens facility will not stress our current system, we operate a professional facility that can accommodate 65 inmates. We are already operating a womens facility so this is an opportunity for us to increase revenue by doing something we are already doing, it is a win-win for all counties involved."
Freeholder Director Louis Magazzu stated, "This four-county regional effort proves how creativity and out-of-the-box thinking is a win for the taxpayers. Three Counties receiving revenue in a time when revenues are down and one county shedding expenses for the taxpayer is ingenious."
The Salem County Women's facility is located in Woodstown, 15 miles from Clarksboro, the Camden County facility is located in Camden City, less than 10 miles from Clarksboro, and the Cumberland facility is located in Bridgeton, about 27 miles from Clarksboro. Transportation will continue to be provided by Gloucester County Corrections and Sheriff's Officers for Gloucester County women inmates just as is currently set-up.
After the women are moved from the Clarksboro facility the county plans on using the site for archives and storage and free up other locations the county currently uses for storage so they in turn could be sold. The Clarksboro facility would be able to be converted back to a correctional facility if needed.