Kansas spent $414K repairing prisons after riots


State News

February 6, 2019 - 11:31 AM

A November 2018 riot at the Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility resulted in one inmate injury. No staff were injured, but five housing units were damaged. FILE PHOTO / KANSAS NEWS SERVICE

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas spent at least $414,000 repairing damage and replacing equipment after inmate riots at three prisons in 2017 and 2018, corrections officials reported, surprising some state lawmakers Tuesday with the amount of expenses.

The figures represented the first attempt by the state Department of Corrections to calculate for legislators the cost of the damage from four major disturbances.

“That amount is startling to me,” said Sen. Rick Billinger, a Goodland Republican and chairman of a Senate budget subcommittee on corrections, whose district includes a low-security prison in Norton where a 2017 riot occurred. “It’s concerning any time there’s damage done and we’re having to use taxpayer dollars to do the repairs.”

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