Missouri’s counties say they have to spend millions of dollars each year to house prisoners facing state charges while the legislature reimburses them for only 53 percent of those costs. That’s an average figure. Greene County Presiding Commissioner David Coonrod, speaking for fellow county commissioners in Missouri, says the state needs to do better. He recalls that in 2002 the state reduced payments to the state by $2.50 a day, to $20 a day. State law allows the legislature to appropriate $37.50 per day to house prisoners in county jails. But Coonrod says the payments would be below his county’s inmate costs even at the maximum figure. He says it costs $48 a day to house a prisoner in his county’s jail. He has told the Senate Appropriations Committee that eighty percent of the inmates in his jail are facing state charges. Coonrod is the President of the Missouri Association of County Commissioners. -bp-