AP: Private Prisons May Be Costing Idaho More; State Hasn’t Checked

The privately run Idaho Correctional Center. Image courtesy boiseweekly.com

Private prisons may actually be costing the state of Idaho more than running its own, according to a new report from the Associated Press. State leaders have refused to examine the issue, reports AP reporter Rebecca Boone; about four years ago, Idaho Department of Correction Director Brent Reinke asked the Board of Correction and Gov. Butch Otter’s office if his department could bid for the contract to run the Idaho Correctional Center, a move that would have given Idaho a firm idea of how much it would cost to make the facility public. The board responded with a firm “no,” and the governor’s office simply deflected the matter back to the board.

“We just decided we’d stay with what we’re doing,” said board member Jay L. Nielsen, who was the board secretary when Reinke made the request in October 2007. “As you know, Idaho likes to have private industry do whatever they can, and I think that’s the reasoning behind it all.” Click below for Boone’s full report.

Does Private Prison Save Idaho Money? No One Knows

Written by Rebecca Boone for The Associated Press

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