TUSCALOOSA, AL (WBRC) - Tuscaloosa County Commissioners agreed to increase funding to the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Office to hire deputies tasked with a new responsibility. Now, money they had been paying the Alabama Department of Forensics to transport bodies will go to the Sheriff’s Office for that same duty.
TCSO hired three deputies to do the job.
“It’s a force multiplier as far as putting additional troops out there on the street. About 75-percent of those paramedic deputies' time are spent out on law enforcement calls, about 25 per cent on medical calls,” Tuscaloosa County Sheriff Ron Abernathy said.
The move came as worries grew it was taking too long for someone to come from outside Tuscaloosa County to do the job. “It was a concern cause we had several instances, not just in my district, but all over the county where it would take a very long time to get the transport done from the scene of an accident,” said Tuscaloosa County Commissioner Stan Acker.
“You’ve got grieving families put in a bad situation and this is going to allow us to eliminate that problem in a very timely manner and quicker medical and deputy response out in the county,” Abernathy concluded.
The County Commission gave the Sheriff’s Office $110,000 in the new budget to hire paramedic deputies to transport bodies. That money had been going to the state until October 1.