Guillory Defends $2 Million Budget Increase For Lafayette Sheriff’s Office
Mayor-President Josh Guillory addressed a line item in his newly-released executive budget that allocates $2 million more to the Lafayette Sheriff's Office than last year. A question about the increase in spending came into KPEL during Guillory's weekly call-in segment Lafayette Live! It was noted that the Lafayette Police Department budget did not get an increase. KPEL News has put in a request to the department about whether cuts to the Lafayette Police budget were ordered.
Guillory responded by first saying the numbers in the listener question were not correct because some of the funding is mandated. When pressed by hosts Rob Kirkpatrick and Bernadette Lee on the $2 million figure, Guillory said the numbers were accurate, but he didn't have the specifics of the Sheriff's budget.
Sheriff's Office Captain John Mowell tells KPEL News the funds will be used for upgrades and repairs at the Lafayette Parish Correctional Center and to fund mandatory staff costs. We've asked for specific information from Lafayette Consolidated Government and the Sheriff's Office on these expenditures.
The Mayor-President has been criticized for his closeness with Lafayette Sheriff Mark Garber and those critics have claimed the Sheriff's Office has undue influence on the administration. For his part, Guillory says the Sheriff has not unduly influenced him or the administration in the budget process.
The total cuts to the proposed budget come out to $21.8 million.
Listen to the full segment below: