Sep 15, 2009


In his latest article, Philip R. Klein writes:
There is a reason nobody in business wants to do business with Jefferson County Government - and we have said it time and time and time again - corruption.
Philip offers no evidence for his wingnut opinion, beyond his mangled version of a real story:
Here we go again - in less than 60 days - the proprietor of the leased Jefferson County Jail where inmates are held and a government building is used for private outsourcing - will leave this fare county. Leaving a huge contract with Harris County (they ran out of room) and holding their prisoners for a small gross profit of $2.5 million.

Well the company that owns the jail business - called Geo Group did not like the deal. Why? Well Jefferson County was making more money than they were and they were taking all of the risk. So - no more risk and no more ...... money for Jefferson County? Which has left around 100 people out of work in the next 60 days and hurt the profit margin (yes we said profit margin) of our county government in the balance.
Philip obfuscated the truth to feed his own personal agenda against Jefferson County.

As an example, the GEO Group has been operating that facility for 11 years, but Klein claims the firm is leaving because they didn't "like the deal."

The real story is a lot simpler than Klein alleges: the U.S. Marshals Service moved its prisoners to state facilities as beds became available.

From the Beaumont Enterprise, Sept. 15, 2009:
Geo notified the county last week that in 60 days it will terminate its contract to run the jail. Room for the Harris County inmates was available after the state removed inmates it housed in Beaumont as beds were made available in state facilities.

The moving of state inmates left the downtown Beaumont jail "grossly overstaffed" and in a "very negative cash flow," [Tom] Rugg said.

The decision leaves the 100 Geo Group guards without jobs and the Harris County inmates nowhere to go in Jefferson County.
From the Beaumont Enterprise, Aug. 26, 2009:
Geo Group Inc., the contract company that runs the jail inside the Jefferson County courthouse, reduced staff last week when the number of inmates in the jail decreased, said Pablo E. Paez, a spokesman for the company.

Inmates of the U.S. Marshal's Office and Texas Department of Criminal Justice were recently housed at the downtown jail until they were transferred elsewhere.
Most sane business people will realize that the GEO Group had too many guards and not enough prisoners. Philip calls this corruption on the part of Jefferson County; I call it poor planning on the part of the GEO Group.

It's not the first time the company has had problems. From October 9, 2007:
The corrections company that lost its contract for running a juvenile prison in West Texas has had problems at other prisons in the state.

The state closed the Coke County Juvenile Center last week and canceled its contract with GEO Group Inc., which had operated the prison since 1994. Officials cited an ombudsman's report that described conditions including dirty bed sheets, feces-smeared cells and insects in the food. The center's 200 inmates were moved to other facilities.

In a report Sunday, The Dallas Morning News said GEO has encountered problems at other facilities it runs in Texas, such as:
  • An Idaho inmate at the Dickens County prison in northwest Texas slashed his throat after being held for three months in a cold, moldy solitary cell with bloodstained bedding, according to court records.
  • GEO settled a wrongful death case brought by the family of a female inmate at the Val Verde County facility. Plaintiffs alleged the inmate committed suicide after being raped and denied psychiatric care, according to court records.
  • A jury ruled Wackenhut Corrections Corp., which became GEO, destroyed evidence of an inmate's beating death at a Willacy County facility and returned a $47.5 million verdict against the company.
GEO spokesman Pablo Paez was not available for comment Sunday. In an earlier interview, he told the Morning News the company strives to provide quality services at its facilities.

State lawmakers are expected to begin hearings soon on GEO's statewide correctional contracts.
The state eventually sued The GEO Group over a wrongful death.

Since Philip mentioned corruption, here's a much better example than Klein's contrived allegations against Jefferson County.

Philip lapses into his same tired rant against Jefferson County by the end of his article:
Roads, bridges, water, sewer, police, fire, ems and infrastructure. Anything other.....a waste of your tax dollars.
I thought Philip said the county was making a "small gross profit of $2.5 million?"


Anonymous said...

Didn't Klein used to work for Wackenbush?

Anonymous said...

Those Dairy Queens never stood a chance with idiot boy steering the ship. His PI firm is in the same condition.

Anonymous said...

If Kleinio did work for Wackenbush, they probably changed the name from shame.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for pointing out the GEO Group's recent history. It's so refreshing that someone presents FACTS!