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Carroll County jail looks to charge incarcerated inmates per diem

Incarcerated felons would have to pay money to the department while they are in jail.

Posted: Jul 10, 2019 5:13 PM
Updated: Jul 10, 2019 6:09 PM

CARROLL COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - The Carroll County Sheriff's Office wants to start charging convicted prisoners a per diem. Incarcerated felons would have to pay money to the department while they are in jail. 

Sheriff Tobe Leazenby said they are still in the early stages of the new process. The amount to be paid and the frequency of payment is still yet to be determined.

Sheriff Leazenby said the department is following the lead of Clinton County and other counties around the state that have already started similar programs. He said several counties in southern Indiana have already started this. The Clinton County Commissioners approved a similar program in June.

Sheriff Leazenby explained the logistics of the fee payment.

"The court actually implements that set fee, whatever it may end up being," he said. "Then they are obligated, whether it's the individual or the family that will contribute to paying those fees."

News 18 asked what happens when people don't pay the fees. He replied that it will most likely be counted as a violation of probation, but said the punishment for not paying is something that still would need to be worked out.

The use of these funds will help take some burden off taxpayers.

"What a lot of the counties are doing is using the funds for strictly jail associated expenses," he said.

He said in Porter County, they were able to use the funds to buy new transport vans. He also liked the idea of implementing mental health and drug-use programs. This will be part of a new era for the Carroll County jail, as it looks to build its new jail facility in 2020.

The ordinance has to be approved by the Carroll County Commissioners, but Sheriff Leazenby said he is confident it will be passed.

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