(AP) — With more than 250 vacant positions, overtime at the Delaware Department of Correction is projected to climb above $30 million this budget year, a 37.7 percent jump from the last fiscal year.
The News Journal reports the projected amount runs counter to the recommendations made in an independent review following a deadly prison riot last year, which was blamed, in part, on severe understaffing that led to more overtime shifts.
Delaware Senate Corrections & Public Safety Committee chair Sen. Bruce Ennis says the overtime problem can’t be solved immediately. He says that despite recently announced incentives and increased pay, people are reluctant to become correctional officers because of the “environment.”
The department has seen 275 correctional officers leave since the riot. Of the 223 people hired since the riot, 48 have been fired.