The Lafayette Juvenile Detention Home may soon see a change of hands. Lafayette City-Parish President Joey Durel wants to see the parish facility handed over to the sheriff's office. Durel says councilman Kenneth Boudreaux will be talking about it during the council meeting Tuesday.
The director of the Lafayette Juvenile Detention Center Rene Prejean says the working relationship he has with the sheriff's office is a good one. Prejean doesn't expect that to change, even if the detention home is handed over.
"I do see it as a workable idea. It's a choice the administration needs to make. It's ultimately between them and the sheriff," explains Prejean.
Prejean expects few changes for employees if switched from consolidated to sheriff office personnel. He says he's met on a temporary basis with the Human Resources Department of the sheriff's office; to let the employees know what they'll be facing. Prejean says he can see where it will be a smooth transition."
Durel says he may be wrong; but after many years of considering the idea the sheriff's office fits the bill. "I've always seen our job as roads and ditches and jobs. It just doesn't feel like it's the right fit,"
Durel is solid in his support of moving the detention home out of parish government's control. The sheriff's office has the expertise he says in housing, rehabilitation and program management.
"While you would not want them mixed with hardened criminals, it just seems the sheriff's is in a better position to do something like this than we are," said Durel.
Such a transfer has been done before with the Management of the Acadiana Recovery Center. Prejean says the detention home is funded through a millage that brings in about $1.4 to $1.5 million.