County to increase fees for out-of-county sex offenders

Convicted sexual and violent offenders who come in to Bartholomew County to work or for other activities would now pay more to be entered into the county’s sex offender registry under a change being considered by the county commissioners.

Under the existing rules those who lived outside Bartholomew County, but travelled here for various activities were only paying $5 annually to be added to the registry, while in-county residents had to pay $50 annually.

Capt. Chris Roberts with the sheriff’s department brought a proposal before the county commissioners yesterday to change the fees for the database and to establish a fund for those fees.

According to Rudy Olivo, who maintains the database for the sheriff’s department, state statue allows counties to charge up to $50 to registrants but doesn’t specify how much can be charged for those who just work, go to school, volunteer or who have secondary residences here. The department has been charging only $5 for those coming into the county, even though it is the same amount of work to change the registry.

Both groups of offenders would still be charged $5 each for any changes during the year, Olivo said.

He said the changes are part of an effort by coordinators from sheriff’s departments around the state to standardize the fees.

Commissioners gave their first approval to the changes yesterday. Ordinances require two approvals before going into effect.