A new executive order from Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker will allow for the Illinois Department of Corrections to take in state prisoners from county jails, but does not require them to do so.

An order halting the intake of new prisoners into IDOC facilities had been in effect since late March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of being shipped to state prisons, those sentenced to the IDOC have been kept in county jails until the state prison system reopens. This has left counties to assume the additional cost of housing those prisoners.

Edwards County Sheriff Darby Boewe shared his thoughts on the governor’s executive order in his report to the Edwards County Board of Commissioners Monday morning during their August regular meeting.

“We can bring our prisoners to IDOC now,” said Boewe, “as long as they were quarantined for 14 days, COVID-tested by a certain company, blah blah blah blah blah.

“Hell, our prisoners have been in there for 14 days.”

The sheriff also explained that medical surveillance is also a constant for inmates in the White County Jail.

“We’ve got jail medical monitoring them all the time,” Boewe explained. “You think (White County Sheriff) Doug (Maier) doesn’t have them monitored daily?

“Yes, he does. He doesn’t want it to start in there.”

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