The Senate passed a bill that would give Iowa prisons $8.5 million dollars in funding to maintain their current staffing levels. Mt. Pleasant Correctional Facility Superintendent Ron Mullen says they have had to cut staff in the past, and if they don’t receive an increase in funding, they will likely have to cut more. He says that the lower staff numbers don’t mean less safety, but it means employees can’t always get the time off that they request. He says it’s not uncommon for five employees to request off for a day, and he can’t give any of them the day off. He says that they have had to cut both support staff and corrections officers. They cut more corrections officers, but that is because there are more employees in that position than support positions, and proportionally support staff has seen the same level of cuts. The bill passed the Senate 26-23, and now moves on to the House for consideration.
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