SPRINGFIELD — County officials in central Ohio say they won’t accept an $840,000 grant from the state prison department because they fear the requirements could cause jail overcrowding.
The Springfield News-Sun reports Clark County officials say the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction grant would require the county to house people sentenced to low-level, fifth-degree felonies in local jails instead of sending them to state prisons.
It costs the state about $26,000 a year to house felons.
Clark County commissioners and the sheriff’s office initially accepted the grant but then declined saying it could lead to a nearly 25 percent increase in the county’s jail population.
Clark County Common Pleas Judge Tom Capper says the increase would create a “nightmare.”
Ohio’s 10 most populous counties are required to accept the grants.