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Cumberland County doubles inmate fees charged to Oxford County Jail

by Rick Haverinen, special to the Sun Journal June 23, 2016

PARIS — The daily fee charged to Oxford County to board inmates at the Cumberland County Jail will more than double starting July 1.

Oxford County Administrator Scott Cole told members of the Oxford County Commission Tuesday that Cumberland County has notified him that the inmate boarding rate will increase from $50 to $108 per day.

The Cumberland County Commissioners voted June 13 to increase the fee. According to Cole, "in the context of adopting their jail budget, they (chose) to set a higher boarding rate."

There had been some welcome news recently regarding jail inmate boarding costs when the Legislature approved $2.2 million to be distributed to all Maine counties to help with inmate housing costs. Oxford County received a $500,000 share.

Oxford County Sheriff Wayne Gallant told commissioners he will explore multiple solutions to address the increased inmate housing costs.

"We're going to look at every angle we can for our housing," Gallant said. "If we can put together a budget so we can work that down the road in case we have to go back to a full-service jail, what our needs are going to be, because the price that they want makes us really want to look at what we do here at home."