West Virginia's Regional Jail Authority endorsed a plan to hire 100 new full-time employees, a plan that is expected to be approved.

Executive director Joe DeLong told the authority that hiring the workers at the 10 regional jails will cost about $2.4 million a year in salaries but should reduce the authority's overtime costs by at least $3.6 million annually.

The understaffing contributes to burnout and high turnover rates.

There is a high turn-over in all the regional jails, and jobs are constantly be refilled.

The long hours for existing employees leads to liability suits and Workers' Compensation claims for incidents and accidents, DeLong said.

"Our people are worn out. They're tired, and they're leaving their guard down," he concluded.

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