CHAPTER 217 - JAILS AND WORKHOUSES - SUSSEX COUNTY JAIL

AN ACT CREATING A BOARD OF TRUSTEES TO MANAGE AND CONTROL THE PRISON, PRISON FARM, COURTHOUSE AND COURTHOUSE ANNEX OF SUSSEX COUNTY: PROVIDING FOR THE APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS OF THE BOARD, THEIR TERMS OF OFFICE, QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPENSES, THEIR POWERS AND DUTIES; PROVIDING FOR THE PAYMENT OF THE EXPENSE OF SUCH MANAGEMENT AND CONTROL BY THE LEVY COURT OF SUSSEX COUNTY; PROVIDING FOR THE CUSTODY, CARE, CONTROL, LABOR AND COMPENSATION OF PRISONERS IN SAID PRISON; AND PROVIDING FOR A SYSTEM OF BOOKKEEPING AND INVENTORY OF PROPERTY.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly met:

Section 1. Within thirty days after the approval of this Act, the Judges of the Superior Court and the Court of General Sessions, residing in Sussex County, shall appoint three suitable persons, residing in said County, who shall constitute "The Board of Trustees of the Prison, Prison Farm, Courthouse and Courthouse Annex of Sussex County. Such Board of Trustees may be referred to as "The Board of Trustees of Sussex County".

Section 2. The members of said Board first appointed hereunder shall serve for the terms of one, two and three years, respectively, the terms to be fixed and designated by the appointing Judges; and upon the expiration of the terms of office so fixed, all appointments to said Board shall be for the term of three years, provided however, that if a vacancy shall be created in any manner other than by expiration of term of office, the appointment to fill such vacancy shall be for the unexpired term.

Section 3. At no time shall all of the Trustees be of the same political party. No Trustee shall be interested, directly or indirectly, in any contract relating to the property committed to their charge, or in the supplying of goods or services to be used in connection with the management and control of said property; nor shall any member of his or her family be appointed to or hold any office under said Board.

No Trustee shall receive any compensation for services, other than the actual expenses of attending the meetings of the Board, and in inspecting the property committed to the charge of the Board.

Each Trustee, before entering upon his duties of the office, shall take and subscribe the oath of office prescribed by the Constitution of this State.

Section 4. Upon their qualification, and in January of each year thereafter, the Board shall organize by the selection of one of its members as President, and one as Secretary. The President, when present, shall preside over all meetings of the Board; and the Secretary shall keep proper minutes of its proceedings.

Section 5. The said Board shall have full and complete jurisdiction and control over the Prison, Prison Farm and land leased in connection therewith, Courthouse and Courthouse Annex of Sussex County, and over all personal property and equipment used in connection with the property committed to its jurisdiction; and in this connection the Board shall have and assume all of the jurisdiction, powers and duties heretofore exercised by or vested in the Levy Court of Sussex County except as otherwise provided herein.

The Board is authorized to acquire by lease, purchase or otherwise all necessary lands and buildings and all equipment, food, food stuffs, uniforms, clothing, books, ledgers, stationery and all other articles and things necessary for the carrying out of the duties imposed hereby. All contracts and engagements for the erection or repair of buildings, or for the purchase of equipment and supplies, where the probable amount shall be in excess of fifty dollars, shall be submitted to public bidding after due advertising, and shall be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder, unless for reasons deemed expedient by the Board approved by the appointing Judges.

Section 6. The Board is authorized to appoint, fix their terms of service and their compensation, and for cause deemed sufficient by the Board and said Judges, to dismiss all Wardens, deputies, guards, keepers, farm overseers, janitors, physicians, chaplains, and other necessary agents and servants; and it may provide the Warden of the Prison and such other deputies or assistants as it shall deem proper with food and living quarters at the Prison Farm.

Section 7. The Board shall, with the approval of said Judges, make and promulgate rules and regulations for the proper care, maintenance and operation of the Prison, Prison Farm, Courthouse, Courthouse Annex, and other property and equipment; for the behavior, care and custody of the prisoners committed to said prison; for the working of said prisoners on the Prison Farm, or elsewhere, and for compensating prisoners for their labor if it shall be deemed expedient, the payment of such compensation to be made to said prisoners during their term, withheld until the term of imprisonment shall have expired, or paid from time to time to their dependent families.

Section 8. The Board, with the advice of the Farm Overseer, shall determine the crops to be planted and grown on the Prison Farm, or land held under lease, and the acreage for each crop. The produce of the Prison Farm, or the proceeds from the sale thereof, shall be used, so far as shall be deemed expedient, to feed the prisoners committed to said prison.

Section 9. The Board shall immediately for the current year, and not later than the first day of March in each year thereafter, prepare a budget of proposed expenditures for the care, operation and maintenance of the property committed to its charge, and for the feeding of prisoners, taking carefully into account in the preparation thereof, the probable income from the property. The Board shall have the power to require of any officer of the County or Judge having an office in the Courthouse or Courthouse Annex a detailed account of books, stationery, or other supplies necessary for the office. The budget, when signed by at least two members of the Board, shall be presented to the Levy Court of Sussex County, to be included in the annual budget of the Levy Court, and the amount thereof levied and collected as a part of the County Tax. The amount required by said budget shall be paid to the Board from time to time as it may deem proper. All money received by the Board, whether from the Levy Court, or from the sale of produce or crops of said Prison Farm, or from the sale of any property whatsoever, shall be deposited in some banking institution of the County designated by it to the credit of said Board; and all checks drawn from said deposit shall be for the purposes of this Act, and shall be signed by the President and countersigned by the Secretary. Any balance remaining to the credit of the account at the end of any fiscal year shall be considered in the preparation of the budget for the ensuing year. In the event that any emergency shall render the amount of the annual budget insufficient for any year a statement of the additional amount of money required, signed by all of the members of the Board and approved by said Judges, shall be presented to the Levy Court of Sussex County and shall be paid to said Board by said Levy Court.

Section 10. The Board is authorized and directed to install a suitable system of bookkeeping, by which will be shown all of the money received by it, and from what source, and all money expended by it and for what purpose. Each year the Board shall prepare and submit to the said Judges a statement of all receipts and expenditures, the amount of produce grown on said farm, and the amount sold, properly classified, the monies received therefrom, or the value thereof used in the feeding of prisoners, and a full and complete inventory of all animals, farm machinery and equipment, and all other specific articles of personal property used in connection with the care, maintenance and operation of the property in its charge.

Section 11. All prisoners duly committed to said prison shall be deemed to be hi the custody of said Board, and from and after the approval of this Act all persons sentenced shall be committed to the custody of said Board. Corporal and capital punishments shall be executed by the Warden of the Prison.

Section 12. All acts or parts of acts inconsistent herewith are repealed but only to the extent of such inconsistency.

Approved April 21, 1941.