CLEARFIELD – The Clearfield County Jail has a new warden.
During Tuesday’s prison board meeting, David C. Gallagher, who was originally hired as a deputy warden earlier this month, was introduced as the new warden of the facility.
Current Warden David Kessling said Gallagher brings experience to the job because he worked in Virginia state correctional facilities and in a federal prison.
“We are lucky to have his background,” Kessling said.
Gallagher is excited to serve here and “he inspires me,” Kessling added. “I think Clearfield County is in good hands.
Kessling resigned in July but has stayed on to help with the upgrading of the building.
At that time, he gave as his reason for leaving that he has been doing this type of work for a very long time, over 30 years, and he is getting tired.
In his resignation letter, he wrote about his achievements. “Over the past two years, this facility has been under budget for a little over $1.3 million dollars for the first time since 2015.
“We have worked diligently with the District Attorney and police departments to stop the 48-hour holds, have implemented much-needed psychiatric treatment for mentally ill individuals, successfully ended an outdated arbitration award saving thousands of dollars of overtime hours paid and are on track to be under budget again this fiscal year,” according to a previous article.
Gallagher will officially take over on Oct. 3.
There was another good candidate interviewed for the warden position that is being offered the deputy warden job, but he has not accepted it yet, Kessling said.
In other personnel issues, it was noted that two correctional officers have resigned for better paying positions, while another has retired.
When asked by President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman about hiring new officers, Kessling responded that 17 people have applied and will be set up for interviews soon.
In other business:
- Controller Robert Edwards reported that financially the jail is still doing well, but the renovation cost is now over $2.17 million.
- Kessling said that there are 23 inmates housed in the Jefferson County Jail due to the construction project.
- There are only two people on work release at this time, but the program has led to over $10,000 in fines being paid to the county.
- The board discussed the Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) program, which assists inmates addicted to opiates while they are incarcerated. Three different groups did presentations on how they would handle this program and their costs. The board will review their information and make a decision at a later time.