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Sheriff candidate – Jimmy Clements

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(Candidates responses are being printed exactly as they were submitted to the Enterprise.)

Full name: James B. Clements (Jimmy)
Age: 54
Address: 1150 Sallie Ray Pike, Raywick, Ky.

Educational background:
Graduate of Marion County High School (1981), attended Campbellsville University, graduate of Department of Criminal Justice Law Enforcement Basic Academy at Eastern Kentucky University, graduate of the Kentucky Department of Corrections Basic Training and graduate of the National Sheriff’s Institute, Aurora, Colorado.

Work experience:
Winn Dixie Warehouse (Louisville, Ky. 1981-1985), Marion Adjustment Center (St. Mary’s, Ky. 1986-1996). Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Chief Deputy Sheriff (1996-2010), Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff (2011-2018).

Family information:
Born and raised in the St. Joe / Raywick communities of Marion County. The fourth of six sons of William Bernard (Billy) and Juanita Newton Clements. Married to the former Julie Ann Masterson of Loretto. Two children, James B. Clements Jr. and Lauren Elizabeth Clements.

Organizations/clubs involved in:
Kentucky Boys and Girls Sheriff’s Ranch, Kentucky Sheriff’s Association, National Sheriff’s Association and the Kentucky Drug Court Program.

Why are you running for sheriff?
It has been an honor to have been given the opportunity to serve as Sheriff for the past seven years. This office carries with it a tremendous amount of responsibilities. Tax collection, court security, prisoner transports, service of civil process as well as law enforcement. I am running because I have the experience, the knowledge and the support of the hard working, dedicated and professional staff we have in place. My goal would be to continue working on making Marion County a great place to live and work.

What are your qualifications to serve as sheriff? What knowledge and experiences have prepared you for this position?
Over 32 years of experience in Law Enforcement and Corrections have prepared me well to continue leading the Sheriff’s Office.

If elected, what will be your priorities in office?
Staff development through increased training above what is required and acquisition of advanced equipment and technology to assist in investigations and overall office operations.

What do you believe will be the most important issues facing the sheriff's department in the next four years? What can you do as sheriff to address those issues?
What I have found as Sheriff is that all issues are important. The person that contacts our office on any given day feels that their issue should be given immediate attention and that is understandable, so in our mind we should take that into consideration. However, prioritizing is important as they can range from something as serious as a theft or drug issue to a simple car unlock. I have found that we take the complaints as they come and do our best in working on addressing them.

If elected, what changes or improvements would you make in the sheriff's department? What would you keep the same?
Some examples of improvements that have been made to our office are the addition of an office website (www.sheriffofmarionco.com), body cameras, a K9 drug dog, Senior Safe Program and the Kid ID Print initiative. The office was recently approved for membership with an agency which will benefit the Sheriff’s Office with investigations. Other ideas that are being considered are the addition of a School Resource Officer and Online tax payments.

What criminal activities are you most concerned about in the county? What can be done to reduce these activities?
The illegal drug problem nationwide drives most all criminal activity, Marion County is no different in that aspect. Continuing the work within our office and partnering with other law enforcement agencies in pursuing those involved in such activity is our goal. Also working with our legislators in passing appropriate drug laws and evaluating and educating the public of available drug and mental health recovery services.

What else would you like voters to know about you?
I was born and raised in Marion County and appreciate the opportunity I have been given by its citizens to serve as their Sheriff. Marion County is my home and always will be. If the voters see fit on May 22, I will continue to work and develop a Sheriff’s Office that Marion County can be proud of. Thank you all!