The Jefferson County Board of Commissioners approved an amended Idaho Department of Corrections contract Feb. 4 that involves the replacement of 40 female inmates with 45 males.

Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office Chief Nora Ortega explained that each male inmate that is housed in the Jefferson County Jail will bring in $80 per inmate, per day rather than $75.

According to the amended contract, the Department of Corrections has guaranteed that the county will be paid for the 45 beds whether they are filled or not.

Ortega told The Jefferson Star Feb. 7 that the female inmates will be transported to an all-female jail that was being remodeled and is now complete. The male replacements are reportedly coming from throughout east Idaho.

She said having 45 males instead of females will not impact operations and that everything will continue as usual.

Sheriff Steve Anderson was unable to attend the meeting due to the Idaho Association of Counties Annual Conference that was held in Boise all of last week.

The county’s original contract with the Department of Corrections was signed in July, 2018. Aside from the amendment, the remainder of the original contract has stayed the same.

During the July, 2018 meeting, Anderson said the estimated additional revenue would amount to more than $1 million per year.

The commissioners unanimously approved the amended contract.

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