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Freeborn County debates ICE funding

Freeborn County received $3.6M from ICE last year but that number has dropped to $2.4M this year.

Posted: Aug 1, 2019 8:12 PM
Updated: Aug 2, 2019 10:33 AM

ALBERT LEA, MINN- It's one of the most controversial topics right now: immigration.

The Freeborn County Adult Detention Center in Albert Lea is home to an Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility, where immigration detainees are held.

Last year the county received $3.6M from ICE. This year that figure has gone down to $2.4M because there is no set contract for a fixed number of beds

Freeborn County Administrator Tom Jensen says the county is roughly $800,000 in the hole when it comes to their ICE agreement.

"We just want them to pay their fair share," Jensen said.

In 2009, Freeborn County ratified their initial agreement meaning they would house ice detainees for a fee. As the county starts to plan for the upcoming years Jensen says the numbers just don't add up.

"We get $96 and it cost us a $120 to house a body," Jensen said.

He further explained the county is then responsible for making up the difference footing the bill for a service they don't have to provide. Freeborn County Sheriff Kurt Freitag says the county isn’t losing money they are just not making as much as anticipated.

"They are seeing things one way,” Freitag said. “I’m looking at things with our hard numbers."

Freitag explained when it comes to the county's budget they are spending money that isn’t guaranteed. While Jensen and the sheriff don't see eye to eye on numbers they are on the same page as what they would like to see moving forward. They would both like to enter into a contract similar to the one in Sherburne County. ICE pays Sherburne County for 300 beds whether they are used or not.

"What I would like to see is a contract with immigration that guarantees the number of beds," Jensen said. “That guaranteed the rate gives me a very hard number that I know, the sheriffs know my finance director know so that we can budget exactly for that."

Sheriff Freitag says he plans to circle back ICE and come up with a new agreement or contract.

"I'm in the process of trying to raise our per diem for not only housing but also for transport,” Freitag. “One of the things I'm going to push for with ICE is that I want a guarantee."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 485230

Reported Deaths: 6554
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1006801585
Ramsey43047801
Dakota36254390
Anoka33274384
Washington22065255
Stearns18723201
St. Louis14794262
Scott13273107
Wright12517115
Olmsted1177988
Sherburne871572
Carver771040
Clay690387
Rice670091
Blue Earth593835
Kandiyohi579474
Crow Wing519681
Chisago498445
Otter Tail481870
Benton446190
Winona418049
Mower404131
Douglas392568
Nobles386847
Goodhue385568
Polk342762
McLeod339349
Beltrami337351
Morrison324247
Lyon313044
Itasca312746
Becker310941
Isanti305754
Carlton300149
Steele299711
Pine282016
Freeborn280523
Nicollet258141
Todd247830
Brown244637
Le Sueur235020
Mille Lacs227247
Cass219924
Waseca208917
Meeker207434
Martin189328
Wabasha18623
Roseau180217
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Houston157314
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Pennington134116
Wadena130920
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Aitkin118933
Sibley117310
Watonwan11728
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Murray9438
Jackson93510
Swift87918
Pope8025
Marshall77815
Stevens7418
Lake73718
Clearwater71914
Lac qui Parle68316
Wilkin67110
Koochiching61811
Big Stone5163
Lincoln5062
Grant4918
Unassigned47968
Norman4768
Mahnomen4417
Kittson40821
Red Lake3625
Traverse3055
Lake of the Woods2191
Cook1180

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 362189

Reported Deaths: 5414
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk58146549
Linn20653312
Scott18288207
Black Hawk16249291
Woodbury14961211
Johnson1383473
Dubuque13537194
Dallas1135890
Pottawattamie10765143
Story1021645
Warren555274
Clinton543284
Cerro Gordo533681
Webster518787
Marshall496272
Sioux494369
Buena Vista473236
Des Moines457661
Muscatine451191
Wapello4330108
Jasper416966
Plymouth394577
Lee375352
Marion359069
Jones294154
Henry292737
Carroll285548
Bremer280154
Crawford274735
Boone259630
Washington254147
Benton252854
Mahaska224346
Jackson221438
Dickinson217439
Tama213465
Kossuth208154
Clay193525
Hamilton192042
Delaware188839
Winneshiek188427
Buchanan185129
Fayette185035
Page183219
Hardin181039
Wright179731
Harrison179669
Cedar177923
Clayton168053
Butler166331
Mills163120
Floyd162740
Madison154518
Cherokee153935
Poweshiek153730
Hancock146829
Lyon145841
Allamakee145646
Iowa144423
Appanoose139147
Grundy139030
Jefferson138232
Winnebago138230
Cass134151
Calhoun133711
Mitchell130840
Louisa128241
Union126331
Chickasaw125213
Sac124218
Emmet121240
Shelby121033
Franklin118419
Humboldt117425
Guthrie116528
Palo Alto104921
Montgomery103936
Howard103121
Clarke100520
Unassigned9890
Keokuk98129
Monroe93128
Adair91928
Ida91032
Pocahontas85519
Davis82623
Monona81627
Greene77310
Lucas73821
Osceola70514
Worth6987
Taylor66412
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