150 Idaho inmates moved out-of-state, many more to go
BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) —
150 Idaho prisoners settled into their new, temporary home in Texas this week.
It's a move the Idaho Department of Correction (IDOC) says it was forced to make because of an extreme shortage of beds in Idaho's prisons and jails.
The inmates are temporarily being held in the Karnes County Correctional Center. The cost there is $69.95 per inmate, per day.
The average cost per day to house an inmate in Idaho prisons was $55.50 in 2013, according to the most recent report on the IDOC's website.
While the move to Texas is temporary, these inmates won't be coming back to Idaho anytime soon. In fact, more inmates will be leaving.
The IDOC's plan is to sign a long-term contract with an out-of-state facility to move up to 1,000 inmates for up to six years, according to Jeff Ray, spokesperson for the Idaho Department of Correction.
KBOI 2News asked how much they're expecting to pay per inmate, per day under this agreement and Ray said they will not have a figure to offer until after the contract is finalized, which they hope to do within the next month.
They also could not yet say what states and facilities are being considered.
The last out-of-state facility to house Idaho Department of Correction inmates was Kit Carson Correctional Center in Burlington, Colorado. The facility housed 250 Idaho inmates. Those inmates came back to Idaho in April 2016.
"We know that going out of state creates challenges for inmates, their families and our staff. We wish we did not have to do this, but we simply have no more beds available here at home," said Ray.
When we asked about the living conditions at Karnes County Correctional Center, Ray told us it is clean and in good repair.