Sheriff Melody Maddox handed the keys to new Chevy BOLT electric vehicles to two current detention officers yesterday, launching a program that will include a fleet of up to 150 take-home electric vehicles for employee use at the 24-hour facility.
“Detention Officers, who are certified jailers, have one of the toughest jobs at this agency,” Maddox said. “Their responsibilities are critical to our around-the-clock jail operation, so these individuals must have reliable transportation getting to and from the office, as well as a high level of personal discipline and commitment.”
The take-home vehicle program, which is voluntary, is the sheriff’s office’s latest recruitment and retention incentive. Earlier this year, the agency lowered the qualifying age to 18 for detention officers and increased the position’s starting salary.
New detention officers become eligible for the electric vehicles once they complete a probationary period. Those already on the job can take advantage of the offer if they are in “good standing.” The agency will provide training, insurance, tires, and maintenance.
Each vehicle comes with a charger and solar-powered charging stations will be installed at the sheriff’s office.
Another goal of the program is to move the agency toward becoming more environmentally responsible. Nationally, government agencies are leading the charge to transition from gas-operated to electric powered fleets.
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