Youth Correctional Center costs spike in 2019

Published: Dec. 31, 2019 at 6:50 PM CST
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All counties that send an incarcerated teen to the Youth Correctional Center in Mandan have to pay a fee.

This year, Morton County budgeted $25,000, but spent six times that.

YCC houses, educates and takes care of youth that break the law at a price of $285 per day.

"$9,500 a month per person, now you have four of them in there. We're looking at $20-$25,000 or more for that when that one month eats up the whole budget," said Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier.

According to the sheriff, the annual cost comes in around $20,000-$35,000, but for 2019 that number spiked to more than a $150,000, which could happen again.

"I brought it to the County Commission cause I wanted to make sure they knew what was going on with it, and understand what this was going to. If it was going to affect the budget now or in the future," said Kirchmeier.

The facility director says the rates are set by law, but they are seeing kids stay for longer than they used to.

"A typical detention stay may have been a couple of days, and now it's closer to maybe about a week in our typical cases, but then we have some of these that kind of stretch out there quite a bit longer," said Tim Tausen, YCC director.

The commission says they will take the issue to the association of counties for discussion.

The sheriff says he's concerned the county may run over again next year.