Video streaming and more: 3 takeaways from the Comal County Commissioners Court

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The Comal County Commissioners Court convened March 21 for its regular meeting. Here are a few takeaways from the session.

1. Video streaming coming soon

Those interested in attending Commissioners Court meetings will no longer have to make their way to the courthouse. County Clerk Bobbie Koepp announced video streaming will be implemented for the court meetings within the next two weeks.

2. Commissioners hear 2018 pretrial bond report

Allison Sayler of the county’s adult probation division provided data to the court showing county savings that resulted from inmates being released on bond or house arrest.

She shared between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2018, 66 defendants were released by district and county court-at-law judges. The savings for the county was $150,480 if the inmates were housed in jail for 30 days.

The numbers show 97 percent of inmates appeared for court dates, and 11 violated conditions of bond and returned to jail.

During the same time period, Sayler said 19 defendants were sentenced to house arrest—totaling 1,549 days—saving the county $117,724.

In addition, $1,180 was collected by the court from bond fees. The Texas Community Supervision and Corrections Department—or CSCD—also benefited by collecting $5,553,000 in bond supervision fees and $894 in drug testing fees.

3. County welcomes 5 German Shepherds to K-9 unit

The commissioners unanimously approved the acceptance of five German Shepherd puppies, which were donated by Dr. James Rierson, a veterinarian at Creek View Veterinary Clinic in New Braunfels.

The dogs are named Gunner, Bandit, Big Tex, Joker and Ranger. They will be used in the Comal County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit.

According to Rierson, each dog carries a value of $7,000-$8,000 untrained. Rierson provided all medical care free of charge as well, including vaccinations and flea and heart work preventative.

“It has been an honor and a pleasure to work with Comal County and its officer-handlers on this initiative, and it is our sincere desire to see our local law enforcement with the aid canine officers continue to succeed for years to come,” Rierson wrote to the court in a statement.

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Rachel Nelson
Rachel Nelson is editor of the New Braunfels edition of Community Impact Newspaper. She covers local business, new development, city and county government, health care, education and transportation. Rachel relocated to Central Texas from Amarillo in 2009 and is a graduate of Texas State University's School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
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