1997 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Burton, Hawks, Smith, Jackson, Minor, Little, Johnson (19th)
Senate Bill 2561
AN ACT TO PROVIDE THAT ANY STATE INMATE OR COUNTY PRISONER WHO IS FINANCIALLY ABLE MUST REIMBURSE THE STATE OR COUNTY FOR THE COST OF INCARCERATION; TO AUTHORIZE THE COLLECTION OF SUCH REIMBURSEMENT COSTS; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. (1) A county may seek reimbursement for any expenses incurred by the county for the incarceration of a person in the county jail as provided in subsections (a) and (b). The Department of Corrections may seek reimbursement for any expenses incurred by the department for the incarceration of a state inmate as provided in subsections (a) and (b).
(a) From each person who is or was a prisoner, not more than Sixty Dollars ($60.00) per day for the expenses of maintaining that prisoner or the actual per diem cost of housing, feeding, clothing, medical care and any other expense of maintaining that prisoner, whichever is less, for the entire period of time the person was confined.
(b) Any other expenses incurred to collect payments under this act.
(2) Before a county or the department seeks any reimbursement under this act, the department shall develop a form to be used for determining the financial status of prisoners. The form shall provide for obtaining the age and marital status of a prisoner, number and ages of children of a prisoner, number and ages of other dependents, type and value of real estate, type and value of personal property, cash and bank accounts, type and value of investments, pensions and annuities, and any other personalty of significant cash value. The county and the department shall use the form when investigating the financial status of prisoners.
SECTION 2. (1) A civil action brought under this act shall be instituted in the county in which the person is incarcerated and shall state the date and place of sentence, the length of time set forth in the sentence, the length of time actually served, and the amount or amounts due.
(2) Before entering any order on behalf of the county or department against the defendant, the court shall take into consideration any legal obligation of the defendant to support a spouse, minor children or other dependents and any moral obligation to support dependents to whom the defendant is providing or has in fact provided support.
(3) The court may enter a money judgment against the defendant and may order that the defendant's property is liable for reimbursement for maintenance and support of the defendant as a prisoner and for other expenses reimbursable under this act.
SECTION 3. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.