Money May Be Coming to House Mentally Ill Inmates

Jail Cell
TAMPA -

The Department of Children and Families says it doesn't have the money to transfer nearly 300 incompetent inmates into treatment facilities. So, the agency will ask lawmakers to approve $16.5 million this Wednesday.

The DCF wants to move the money from general revenues targeted for residential treatment of emotionally disturbed children - according to State Sen. Nan Rich of Sunrise.

She serves on the legislative commission that oversees emergency spending.

RICH: The hard part is going to be as we move along is to find exactly how many beds we do need, and to find providers for these services because you just don't have providers that are readyout there to service another 373 people.

Rich has another concern - the money only covers the estimated costs for the rest of the year. And, lawmakers will have to find permanent, annual funding.

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