Shutdown not affecting Ill. area jails holding federal inmates

The prisons only hold around 10 federal prisoners at any given time so there really hasn't been much of a change

Andy Kravetz
Journal Star, Peoria, Ill.

PEORIA, Ill. — The sheriffs in Peoria and Tazewell County say the ongoing government shutdown has not and likely will not affect operations at their respective jails.

As the shutdown continues, the U.S. Department of Justice could run out of money to house inmates and as such, either ask to keep them in county jails as they await trial or opt to put them elsewhere. For some jails, that could possibly be a major burden financially or possibly a lost revenue stream until the money starts flowing again.

But in central Illinois, at least, it doesn't appear to be a major issue.

Newly elected Jeff Lower said the Tazewell County Jail holds about 10 federal prisoners at any given time so there really hasn't been much of a change, he said.

"They are usually a few months behind paying anyway, so we might not see a change for a while," Lower said.

His counterpart, Peoria County Sheriff Brian Asbell, echoed that sentiment. His jail holds about 25 inmates at any given time. Having been through shutdowns before, he said, it's not a major worry. So far, the Peoria County Jail has been paid through December and the payment plan that they are on doesn't have another payment coming for a while.

The U.S. Marshals Service will often use county jails to hold prisoners awaiting trial or those who were brought to be a witness in a trial or a court hearing.


©2019 the Journal Star (Peoria, Ill.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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