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Jackson Co. sheriff to be new corrections director

By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network


Governor Rick Snyder has named the Jackson County sheriff to be the state's new corrections department director. As we hear from Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta, Danial Heynes will have to balance protecting the public and reining in a budget of $2 billion.

The department has been operating under an acting director since Governor Snyder took office in January. The corrections budget is the biggest stress on the state's general fund, and Michigan generally pays more per-inmate than its Midwestern neighbors. But the governor says saving money is a secondary priority.

"Public safety comes first and then cost-efficiency," he says.

But the new director says he does want to find out why Michigan spends more per-inmate. Daniel Heynes nods his head toward the governor and says:

"If he's good for the gas money, I'm going to head out and visit a few of those states and find out what they're doing differently from Michigan and see if we can't bring ourselves back into line."

Heynes will leave his job as Jackson County's elected sheriff to become the Michigan corrections director on June 1.

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