IT'S YOUR MONEY: Taxpayers Cover Cost of Housing Inmates

4 years 11 months 1 week ago Thursday, May 16 2013 May 16, 2013 Thursday, May 16, 2013 7:28:00 AM CDT May 16, 2013 in News
By: Emily Spain
loading

COLE COUNTY - Thanks to your tax dollars, the doors at county jails stay locked. The county operation keeps local criminals off the streets and away from your family.

"Constitutionally what our jails are designed to do, is to detain those people that are either a flight risk or someone that is dangerous to the community," Cole County Sheriff Greg White said.

However, your safety comes at a price. Boone County jail administrator Warren Brewer said the county works its best to keep the cost to taxpayers down. Right now, the county speends more than $4 million every year to house an average of 200 inmates. Break that down, taxpayers spend $59.63 to put one criminal in jail for one day, which covers inmates' meals, medical care and shelter. Brewer said that also covers maintenance fees and building depreciation.

"Payroll is your biggest expense, but I just think we do a good job for the money," he said. He added that Boone County wants to keep salaries for county employees competitive in order to attract good workers.

Cole County Sheriff Greg White said his county's taxpayers spend more money than Boone County per day per inmate, partly because of its brand-new jail. Cole County residents pay closer to $70 per inmate per day. Like Brewer, White stands behind that cost.

"Based on the new structure and still feeling through staffing, we feel that that's probably the absolute best that we can do at this point," White said.

It costs Boone County and Cole County the most to lock up bad guys compared to other counties in our viewing area, but they're also home to two of the largest jails in mid-Missouri.  I

"I don't see medical prices going down in the future," White said. "You've seen the increase in grocery prices, all of that gets passed on to the inmate population as well."

There are measures in place to pay back counties, but it doesn't always happen. The state pays county jails back about $20 for the time state-sentenced inmates are housed there, but that's still less than half of what it costs to house them.

"I think the big issue for most sheriffs across the state of Missouri is we wish the state would pay the actual cost, we understand that they have budget constraints like everyone else," White said.

It is law for inmates to pay their dues to jails for the time they spent locked up, but Brewer explained the county won't find any money there.

"Most of them don't own property, they don't have a good job or they don't have a job at all and we would expend more I think...in trying to get money back then we would actually obtain in doing so," Brewer said.

Missouri lawmakers are discussing a bill this session to try and help repay county jails. Senate Bill 42 would keep former inmates from getting lottery winnings, tax refunds and recreational licenses until they pay jails back for their stay. The bill is sponsored by Republican Senator Brian Munzlinger and is currently in conference with Friday being the last day in the 2013 session.  

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA -Bullets hit a Columbia residence early Sunday morning while five people were inside. It happened just after 4... More >>
3 minutes ago Monday, April 23 2018 Apr 23, 2018 Monday, April 23, 2018 9:59:00 AM CDT April 23, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has turned down an appeal from a man who committed robbery and other... More >>
17 minutes ago Monday, April 23 2018 Apr 23, 2018 Monday, April 23, 2018 9:44:25 AM CDT April 23, 2018 in News
MEXICO, Mo. – Approximately one year after President Trump took office, the lives of DACA recipients hang in the balance.... More >>
14 hours ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 7:35:00 PM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The official weather station on MU's Campus at Sanborn Field is “completely destroyed” after a vandalism incident either... More >>
14 hours ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 7:29:00 PM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Aldi on Green Meadows Road remains closed Monday after heavy flames billowed right behind store as a fire... More >>
16 hours ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 5:48:00 PM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Area Earth Day Festival featured local vendors, food trucks and live music Sunday. The festival... More >>
17 hours ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 4:20:00 PM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
BOONVILLE - An electronic music festival by the name "Boonphoria" has attendees wondering if the event was just a money... More >>
18 hours ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 3:49:00 PM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
ELDON - Flags are at half staff all throughout Miller County, as residents honor the life of Deputy Casey Shoemate.... More >>
18 hours ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 3:39:00 PM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - A local organization sought to raise awareness about renewable energy by having people exert some. Renew Missouri,... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, April 22 2018 Apr 22, 2018 Sunday, April 22, 2018 6:31:00 AM CDT April 22, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Friday was the anniversary of the Columbine shooting, and on Saturday, members of the Jefferson City community... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 10:03:00 PM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler, R- Harrisonville announced the winner of her annual congressional art competition Saturday afternoon. ... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 4:29:00 PM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Community members took laps around the MizzouRec Saturday to raise money for Relay For Life of Mizzou’s main event,... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 3:14:00 PM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
LAKE OZARK - For the past five years, Osage Heritage Elementary has hosted a Color Run to raise funds for... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 1:29:00 PM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
CLAYTON (AP) — A former St. Louis-area teacher will be on five years of probation for having sex with a... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 8:43:59 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
UNIVERSITY CITY (AP) — A former St. Louis-area day care teaching assistant has been found guilty of molesting a 5-year-old... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 8:40:09 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY -- Firefighters responded to a structure fire in the 100 block of E. Ashley St. at 11:08 p.m.... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 6:27:00 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri legislators approved numerous changes Thursday to local elections, including allowing voters to request absentee ballots... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, April 21 2018 Apr 21, 2018 Saturday, April 21, 2018 5:27:13 AM CDT April 21, 2018 in News
MILLER COUNTY - Casey Shoemate, a 26-year-old Miller County sheriff's deputy, died Friday night after colliding head-on with another vehicle... More >>
2 days ago Friday, April 20 2018 Apr 20, 2018 Friday, April 20, 2018 10:05:00 PM CDT April 20, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 55°
10am 59°
11am 62°
12pm 63°
1pm 66°