THUNDER LAKE -- Cass County Board voted Tuesday night to ask Crow Wing County to advertise for an alternate bid to add to that county's new county jail construction project that would enable Cass to board 60 prisoners a day there for 10 years.
The optional alternate bid would call for Crow Wing to add one more inmate unit to the new jail, which would be assigned to Cass County for Cass County inmates.
Based on construction and operating estimates Crow Wing has received, Cass County Administrator Robert Yochum told the Cass Board Tuesday Cass' cost would run about $35 per inmate per day for operations and $9.13 per day for construction costs if amortized over 10 years, for a total per inmate cost per day of $44.13.
The additional construction onto Crow Wing's jail is estimated to cost about $2 million more than the facility would if designed only for Crow Wing's use, Yochum said.
Cass currently pays Morrison and Aitkin counties $48 per inmate per day to board 10 inmates under contract at those jails.
Cass Jail Administrator Bert Woodford told the board he and Sheriff Randy Fisher have discussed with Crow Wing Sheriff's Department the possibility prisoners from southern Cass County could be booked at Crow Wing Jail and appear in Cass County District Court for arraignments from the Crow Wing Jail via interactive television. This would save some transportation costs to Walker.
Cass commissioners asked Yochum to arrange a joint Cass-Crow Wing County Board meeting in the near future to discuss the proposal.
Hubbard County officials also have asked Cass to consider joining them in a proposed new jail construction project in Park Rapids. No details have been presented to date. Cass' board indicated a willingness to consider a specific proposal if presented.
When Crow Wing County's construction bids are received, Cass and Crow Wing County Board members could be asked to make a decision on whether to accept the alternate bid for the additional 60-bed cell unit to serve Cass County.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.