State budget cuts will force 46 prosecutors in Jefferson County to be furloughed for three weeks.
Governor Steve Beshear has asked prosecutors, and many other departments, to cut their budgets by four percent. For the 30th district Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office in Jefferson County, that means furloughs.
“We don’t have a fleet of cars we can put off buying new cars, we don’t have projects, we can’t put off anything like that,” says Commonwealth’s Attorney David Stengel. “It’s basically the prosecutors and the support staff and that’s it.”
The furloughs will be broken up into three one-week periods when all of the prosecutors will stay home. Stengel says the reduced hours will affect his office’s cases.
“You’re going to keep people in jail longer if they can’t make bond. That costs Metro because Metro pays for the jail,” he says. “Hopefully we won’t lose witnesses but anytime you continue cases witnesses get tired of coming in and you have no shows and that damages your case.”
Stengel says he’s working with the courts to determine the best time for the furloughs.