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Published August 19, 2011, 09:46 PM

Clay County sex offender program costs going up

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) - On the heels of Minnesota's new budget, counties are starting to slash programs, and the county's share of some controversial state funded programs, like the sex offender program, are going up. Way up.

On the heels of Minnesota's new budget, counties are starting to slash programs, and the county's share of some controversial state funded programs, like the sex offender program, are going up. Way up.

Clay County will see increased costs at several levels including with the sex offender program where it will now cost two-and-a-half times as much to have someone committed.

Clay County is paying more than $10,000 a year to keep each of its eight sex offenders locked up, that's only ten-percent of the costs. Now, for every new offender, the county will have to pay 25%.

The county has also slashed $55,000 in the Mental Health Department and roughly $130,000 in Child and Community Development. County Commissioners will still have to figure out to cut another $1.7 million.

Brian Berg – Clay County Administrator: “Hopefully we've been anticipating some of these. The services have been reduced, we've leaned out a little bit, some of the positions haven't been filled and in social services we will run fewer positions, does that mean less services to those people? Yes it does.”

Berg says ultimately increased costs along with a decreased budget will eventually have to be passed on to the taxpayer. These same sex offender costs are being passed on to every county in Minnesota.

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