According to this Savage Pacer article, the Governor is attempting to gain nearly $5.5 million in funding for a new fence at the Shakopee Women’s Prison. While the hedgerow that is currently separating inmates from residents has been surprisingly effective at stopping escapes, residents want a wrought iron design so that it looks good in their neighborhood, something which raises the potential price and limits the likelihood it will be approved in the bonding bill yet again.
From the article:
Politics in Minnesota is reporting that Gov. Mark Dayton has included $5.2 million for a security fence at the Shakopee women’s prison in his bonding bill proposal released Monday morning.
Like his predecessor Tim Pawlenty, Dayton has tried before to obtain funding for the controversial prison fence.
Although a top priority for the Minnesota Department of Corrections, it was ultimately left out of the final legislation that passed the Legislature, judged by some lawmakers as too expensive.
The fence’s estimated $5.4 million price tag is hefty due to the secondary interior invisible detection system, as well as the brick and wrought-iron design preferred by neighbors, some of which would prefer not to see a fence at all.
Shakopee’s Women’s Prison houses all five levels of inmates from minimum up through maximum security offenders. With a wide range of prisoners being housed there, one would think that neighboring residents would want the best barriers available regardless of their aesthetics. If the costs would come down with a less visually appealing fence but would offer the same or better protections, it’s surprising that the battle continues.
What about you? If you lived near a prison would you prefer looks over potential safety especially knowing that all 5 levels of offenders were housed within? Do you think that compared to the other items on the countless bonding bills passed over the years that a $5.5 million prison fence should be included over some others? Whatever you have to say about this one go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.