If you do the crime in Polk County Florida you better be ready to pay for your time staying at the county jail. Starting on Wednesday inmates are being charged for their cells.
The $2 fee per night is estimated to bring in between $300,000 and $500,000 a year for the prison. That money will go towards offsetting the costs of food, clothing and laundry.
When the prisoners enter the jail an account is set up. The fees will be deducted
from that account or they will have a negative balance.
No one will be denied medical care of hygiene products. In fact the fees may reduce canteen sales.
The store funds help provide rehabilitation programs, exercise equipment and television sets paid for through the inmate commissary fund.
Several other Florida prisons have set fees for daily cell ‘rental.’
Polk inmates cost tax payers about $52 a day. The new program goes along with current programs in place. Inmates are charged a $30 booking fee and $9 for a hygiene kit and underwear. Those that can pay are also charged for their medical care and work programs.
With the average stay in the jail at 34 days the cost is about $100 for the mandatory fees. That’s about the same price as one night in a local motel.
Sheriff Grady Judd has some good advice for those who are complaining about the fees the Lakeland Ledger reports.
“There are always going to be some of them who whine and complain. My answer to them is stay out of county jail,” he said. “Behave your-self, quit violating the law and you don’t have to come to jail.”