16 Pierce County Jail corrections officers being laid off

TACOMA -- The Pierce County Sheriff's Department is laying off 16 corrections deputies and demoting four jail officers because of a $5 million budget deficit, The News Tribune of Tacoma reported Monday.

The newspaper said the employees were notified Friday, and that the layoffs will take effect Oct. 2.

The county jail's budget shortfall apparently is the result of the cities of Tacoma and Lakewood sending their misdemeanor bookings to jails that charge lower rates, leaving the Pierce County Jail with less income. The News Tribune said Fife charges about $20 for booking inmates and $65 per day per prisoner, while Pierce County charges $212 for booking inmates and $85 per day.

The Pierce County Council will take final action on budget cuts Sept. 17.