Jail revenue is one of the largest portions of Bowie County's budget and officials say a lack of jail contracts has taken it's toll on the county.

However, starting in March things could be looking up.

Bowie County Correctional Center will begin housing about 288 inmates from Arkansas.

Not only will this help Arkansas with overcrowding, but county officials say it will help increase revenue for Bowie County.

"This is really good for the county. It's going to bring us in close to $500,000 in revenue a year," said Sheriff James Prince, Bowie County, Texas.

Prince says La Salle, the company that manages the jail, began working to receive the Arkansas Department of Corrections contract about six months ago.

Bowie County currently has 250 inmates in the corrections facility, Little River County has 34 inmates and the U.S. Marshal's office has 18.

Prince says they'll still have nearly 200 empty beds, but they also have some pending contracts with other counties.

"It's really important to bring in what revenue we can to the county in times of financial hardship," explained Prince.

Last year, each department in the county was asked to cut 15 percent from their payroll to help keep the county operational.

Meanwhile, Prince says there's still a need to replace four washers and four dryers in the jail.

He says properly working equipment is necessary to keep the jail in compliance of standards, as well as, to attract new jail contracts.

"We want to make sure we're able to take care business as best as we can. We want Arkansas to know we are taking good care of their inmates," said Prince.

La Salle is currently hiring more correctional officers to help with the increase of inmates to the Bowie County Correctional Center.


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