PRESCOTT -- Yavapai Sheriff Scott Mascher has been elected President of the Arizona Sheriff's Association (ASA) for 2012, representing elected sheriffs in all 15 Arizona counties.
Sheriff Mascher follows outgoing Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu, who concludes a two year term as the Association's President. Sheriff Babeu said, "Sheriff Mascher is well respected by law enforcement agencies across the state and was elected with full support of the membership."
Sheriff Mascher has been with the Yavapai Sheriff's Office 28 years, appointed Sheriff in last June after the Steve Waugh retired.
Arizona Sheriff's Association plays a critical role in law enforcement services around the state with responsibilities that include operation of county detention centers, patrol and investigative functions, search and rescue, emergency management, and regional support to many local police departments. In his role as ASA President, Sheriff Mascher will facilitate meetings for members with focus on coordinating a uniform agenda to improve public safety throughout the state. The combined voice of ASA members strengthens the ability to advance new or improved laws before the legislature, Governor and elected officials in Washington D.C.
Sheriff Mascher appreciates this opportunity to team up with his respective peers as counties take on issues involving budget cuts while attempting to maintain adequate personnel levels in law enforcement.
One of his top priorities as ASA President is to push for legislation to repeal the "Inmate Shift" law recently passed by the Arizona legislature and set to begin in fiscal year 2013. This program, which will have a detrimental financial impact on every Arizona County, requires any person sentenced to one year or less in the Arizona Department of Corrections (ADC) be committed to the county jail in the sentencing county. The county could transfer custody of the inmate to ADC only if it reimburses the State for the cost of incarceration, otherwise the county will be responsible for all housing costs. For Yavapai County, this would exceed well over 1 million dollars per year.
This cost is based on the established current average of 50 inmates sentenced to less than 1 year resulting from a conviction in Yavapai County.
The issue of overcrowding also becomes a factor as average daily inmate population grows. Sheriff Mascher and ASA members will be partnering with the Arizona County Supervisors and County Attorney's Associations in the effort to repeal this law.