Cutting Spokane Co. Jail costs: Keeping inmate jumpsuits longer

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by HAYLEY GUENTHNER & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on August 26, 2014 at 5:34 PM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 26 at 5:34 PM

SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.  --  Two on Your Side learned the Spokane County Jail has spent a lot more taxpayer money to clothe criminals.

According to jail workers, costs nearly doubled between 2011 and 2012.

Jail officials said the cost of clothing was only about $47,000 for all of 2011.  By the end of 2012, it shot up to about $84,000.  In 2013, costs totaled $76,000.

Jail workers said costs increased because new clothes replaced hundreds of jumpsuits that were torn.

To outfit an inmate completely, jail workers said they require shirts, pants, shoes, and undergarments.

According to jail officials, the whole set only runs about $13.50

Each inmate is issued two to three different jumpsuits.

KREM 2 News learned jail officials had delayed clothing replacements for years, but things became so bad that they were forced to act in 2012.

In order to bring costs down, jail staff said they now sew torn jumpsuits.

Jail workers said many jumpsuits can now be worn for more than five years.

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