Manuals and Guides
The Virginia Sheriffs’ Accounting Manual by the Auditor of Public Accounts
The Sheriff is a public official, who is essentially always “on-duty.” Therefore, any funds the Sheriff handles carry the presumption that they are public funds. Further, any money coming into the Sheriff’s custody, other than a paycheck or personal funds, carries with it the overriding assumption that the Sheriff is the fiduciary custodian and is holding the money for someone else.
This manual recommends and provides guidance on the accounting procedures for funds collected by Sheriffs throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Sheriffs should remember that regardless of their offices’ size or activity level, they are responsible for having sufficient controls and procedures in place to satisfy statutory requirements and prevent fraud, misuse, or loss of funds and assets. These accounting procedures should serve as a guide for developing individual facility accounting systems.
Civil Process Manual
Please find a link below to the civil process manual. This handbook will provide convenient reference and guidance regarding the service of civil process and related sheriff’s office functions. The handbook is designed to be as concise as clarity and understanding will permit; therefore, legal references (especially the Virginia State Code) are set forth for virtually every item in the book to facilitate legal research of any situation when necessary. A reading of the complete statute (plus any dictum set forth in the code) may help resolve a problem, since the entries in the handbook are basically a “thumb-nail” summary of the statute. The manual is provided by the Virginia Sheriffs’ Civil Enforcement Association.
Virginia Sheriffs’ Association Crime Report
Each year the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association uses the Crime Report submitted by various law enforcement agencies to the Virginia Department of State Police and develops a report which reflects the number of arrests by each locality and the various sheriffs’ offices. Attached is the latest information available for arrests by law enforcement agencies in Virginia for serious and less serious crimes as reported to the Virginia State Police.
Virginia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
Please access the York County-Poquoson FOIA Policy for an example of a best practices policy here: http://www.yorkcounty.gov/Portals/0/sheriff/FOIA_Sheriffs_Office.pdf?ver=2016-05-06-144305-933
State and Local Government Conflict of Interests Act
The Conflict of Interests Act establishes the statutory “ethical regulatory atmosphere” in which constitutional officers and other state and local government officials must operate in Virginia.
For more information visit the VA Conflict of Interest & Ethics Advisory Council website. Also, please find a PowerPoint presentation regarding recent 2015 changes to the Conflict of Interest Act regarding Sheriffs: Virginia Ethics Legislation
Electronic Monitoring (including GPS) Programs
In 2010, Item 370 of the Appropriations Act directed the Secretary of Public Safety to coordinate the development of a statewide system for the use of GPS and other electronic methods of monitoring offenders as an alternative to incarceration. As part of this system, the Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) was directed to develop guidelines and criteria for the use of these systems and the Department of Corrections was directed to establish contracts for GPS and other services.
As directed, DCJS developed guidelines for use by localities wishing to implement an electronic/GPS monitoring program. Care was taken to provide potential users with a clear outline to follow in establishing the program’s purpose and expectations, developing policies and procedures for participant selection and management, and selecting electronic equipment/monitoring services. The guidelines adhere to a principle of local decision making and are designed as a tool to assist those wishing to establish programs. Prior to publication, the guidelines were reviewed by the Electronic Monitoring Subcommittee of the Secretary of Public Safety’s Alternatives for Non-Violent Offenders Task Force (chaired by Sheriff Robert McCabe) and subsequently recommended by the Task Force.
For guidance on establishing electronic monitoring (including GPS) programs, click here.