Editorial: Hiring additional agent should be approved

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 23, 2004

In a nearly perfect world, criminal offenders would number few, and those few would follow court orders.

But as a recent request for an additional agent by Freeborn County Court Services Director Tom Jensen indicates, the above is simply not a realistic scenerio. Indeed, the number of offenders has increased from 485 to 1,022 in the past five years &045; or 30 percent.

The request for an additional agent isn’t out of line and we hope the commissioners grant the request.

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Naturally, there is the potential for county expense, but even that has been resolved. If the county and state approve the proposal, the state will reimburse Freeborn County for half of the agent’s salary.

In addition, new fees implemented last summer, would cover the county’s portion of the salary and benefits.

The new agent’s duties would allow court services to take a proactive position in working with offenders and this too, makes sense, because it’s less expensive in the long run than a reactive approach.

Allowing Jensen to hire an additional agent is in the best interests of Freeborn County.