Derek Dowsett is the Producer of the County Seat. Now entering his 11th season of the program, he has received what he considers a "Crash Course" in County Government.

Over a decade ago the Utah State Legislature agreed to help fund state prisoners who were sentenced directly to county jail on a 50/50 split. Where both the counties and the state accepted that they each had half of the responsibility. The problem with the agreement has been that the state has never upheld their half of the agreement. The pool of money appropriated to help fund COP reimbursements has been continually underfunded leaving the counties to pay the difference.

The issue has become a perennial issue at the legislature. A five cent beer tax was proposed last year but didn’t gain enough traction to be passed. This year Utah Association of Counties is looking at having some of the revenue that is created by the current beer tax being dedicated to help pay for state inmates who are sentenced directly to county jail.