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Madison County Commission says efforts have lowered inmate count in jail

MADISON COUNTY, Ala.-- Several items on Wednesday's Madison County Commission agenda involved the jail. Commissioners discussed continuing efforts to improve mental health, inmate housing and care.

In the last five years, Madison County officials say they have made huge strides with the jail.

"The population of the jail has been reduced from 1,100 to 787 today, so that right there is a huge savings to the tax payer," said Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong.

He said it has been a collaborative effort among the commission, law enforcement, and the justice system. However, there is still work to be done.

"Our judges see the highest case load of any judges here at the twenty-third circuit anywhere in the state of Alabama. We've got to work to bring more judges here to the Madison County courthouse," said Strong.

He thinks so far the process is working well. Madison County law enforcement is committed to bettering the system.

"The sheriff today was recognized at the national level for his faith-based effort with some of our preachers here locally, and what they're doing to assist in ministries throughout our jail," said Strong.

Strong said the goal is to make our community as safe as possible and putting effort into our jail system is a good start.

"The big thing is people in this county, whether they live in Madison, Huntsville, Gurley, New hope, Owens Crossroads or Triana, they understand if someone's a threat to society we've got a jail that will take care of business," he said.

On Wednesday the commission signed an agreement to assist the City of Madison with inmate housing.