WALKER -- Cass County Sheriff Randy Fisher obtained county board approval Tuesday to expand contracts with Aitkin and Morrison counties to board Cass inmates in those jails.
Cass has been contracting to guarantee use of five jail beds each in Aitkin and Morrison. That will expand to 10 beds at each jail. Contract cost will continue at $48 per day per inmate or a $960 per day total charge to Cass.
Bert Woodford, Cass jail administrator, said he has been boarding that many inmates recently in both neighboring jails because of the overflow in the Cass jail.
Administrator Robert Yochum reminded commissioners that operating the existing Cass jail costs an estimated $75 per day per inmate. He said the contracts are beneficial for Cass County until such time as Aitkin and Morrison no longer have extra jail space. Woodford said Aitkin County already has had to turn down some Cass jail business because its jail was full.
Cass' jail is licensed as a 60-bed facility, but to separate inmates between pre-sentenced and sentenced, male and female and to meet other Minnesota Department of Corrections standards, the facility actually is supposed to hold only 48 inmates at any given time.
Woodford reported so far this year, Cass has had more than 50 inmates in the jail many days and has had 63 housed here one day.
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