The site plan for a women's prison in Rapid City, as displayed at a groundbreaking ceremony Oct. 16, 2023. (Seth Tupper/South Dakota Searchlight)

Corrections secretary pushed on ballooning costs for prison projects

BY: - February 21, 2024

PIERRE – Lawmakers peppered the Department of Corrections secretary with questions on Wednesday morning about the growing gap between initial and current price points for two new state prisons. Secretary Kellie Wasko told lawmakers that the state will have a “guaranteed maximum price” in November for the men’s prison. Barring a legal victory by the […]

South Dakota Department of Corrections Director of Finance and Administration Brittni Skipper, left, and DOC Secretary Kellie Wasko address the Joint Appropriations Committee on Jan. 29, 2024, in Pierre. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Short staffing leaves prisons running on overtime

BY: - January 29, 2024

PIERRE – For every pay period, the average correctional officer in a South Dakota prison works an average of 14 overtime hours. That’s an hour more than the last fiscal year and four more than 2022. Those hours will continue to pile up until the Department of Corrections can cut the workforce vacancy rate at […]