The Franklin County Budget Committee expresses its unanimous and whole-hearted support for the Franklin County Commissioners’ decision to withhold the quarterly payment to the Department of Corrections. We further unanimously support Sheriff Scott Nichols in his endeavor to negotiate an agreement with the Somerset County sheriff to house our inmates in the Somerset facility.

It is our hope that the DOC will realize that we are serious in our desire for the return of our jail. Our sheriff has complied with every demand of the DOC, as have the county commissioners. Our facility is ready to receive prisoners, yet the DOC still refuses to grant a change of mission from a 72-hour detention center to a full-service jail. Also, it refuses to issue us the license necessary to become operational.

By its own admission, the only reason for not granting our requests is its need for Franklin County’s money. We hope that the DOC will understand that what it is doing smacks of extortion. This is unacceptable. It is behavior unworthy of an agency of the proud state of Maine.

John Calloway, chairman, for the Franklin County Budget Committee

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