County may charge inmates for toilet paper
February 13, 2009
DES MOINES, IA — Des Moines County is flirting with an idea to charge jail inmates for their toilet paper use, according to the Des Moines Register.
The idea comes in lieu of a $1.7 million budget deficit with two options for reduction: Cut costs or face employee furloughs and layoffs, the story stated.
According to the county''s budget director Cheryl McVey, billing inmates could save more than $2,300 a year, a figure provided by the county jail''s maintenance department.
It remains unclear whether inmates would be charged by the sheet, square or roll, the story noted.
Curt Braby, Louisa County sheriff and president of the Iowa State Sheriffs and Deputies Association, said: "They''ve got budget problems, and they''re looking for places to cut. But what do you do for the guy who hasn''t got the dollar for the toilet paper?"
Inmates would likely spend money from commissary accounts if asked to pay for their toilet paper, an idea that is not on the books in any other county, the story added.
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