Ex-inmate monitoring affected by budget cuts | NevadaAppeal.com

Ex-inmate monitoring affected by budget cuts

Associated Press

Budget cuts have led to limits on how many miles Nevada parole-probation officers can put on their state vehicles.

The state Parole and Probation Division on Sept. 20 placed a 700-mile monthly limit on the agency’s vehicles in Clark and Washoe counties, Nevada’s largest. Most of the agency’s 201 vehicles are in those counties.

Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley, D-Las Vegas, says the limit is “disturbing news,” adding that she heard over the weekend that a quarter of the agency’s vehicles had reached the mileage limit by Oct. 2 and under the new policy couldn’t be driven again until Oct. 19.

Dan Burns, spokesman for the state Department of Public Safety which oversees the parole-probation division, said Wednesday the mileage limit isn’t endangering the public because staffers can “be creative” and use vehicles that aren’t over the mileage limit.

Burns added that officers can double up if they’re traveling to the same area, or take their cars home at night to cut down on mileage the next day in checking up on those on parole or probation.

However, the division plans to ask the Legislative Interim Finance Committee for an emergency appropriation at the committee’s Nov. 20 meeting.

Budget cuts have left 92 vacancies in the Parole and Probation Division, which has an authorized staff of 532. The finance committee could tell the division to use the savings from the unfilled positions to offset its limits on travel, rather than dip into the state’s emergency funds.