The Norman Transcript

April 24, 2014

Can’t have it both ways

The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Local sheriff Joe Lester wasn’t among the state sheriffs and lawmakers protesting the removal of state prisoners from county jails this week.

The sheriffs, some of whom have protested by having too many state prisoners in their facilities, are now concerned the quick pullout will impact their budgets. You can’t have it both ways.

Those sheriffs had come to rely on the $27 per day payment made by the state after a prisoner had been sentenced but was still in the local jail.

The new corrections director has been aggressively addressing the backlog.

Many of the inmates have been placed in private prisons under contract with the state. It’s still an expense to the state, but it keeps county jails from being overcrowded, something sheriffs have complained about in the past.

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