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Gainesville no longer to use prison labor

January 26, 2019

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Officials in a Florida city have decided they will no longer use prison labor.

The Gainesville Sun reports that Gainesville city commissioners voted 5-1 on Thursday to terminate three contracts with the Florida Department of Corrections.

Commissioner Gail Johnson says it’s wrong to use prison crews as unpaid manual labor. She called ending the contracts “a moral issue.”

Officials had initially planned to end the contracts in October, but this week’s vote ends them in 30 days.

Assistant City Manager Dan Hoffman says they’ll have to figure out how work like cleaning or removing debris from trails will get done. Gainesville will likely spend an additional $50,000 per month that hadn’t been budgeted for this fiscal year. The work is expected to cost the city about $654,000 in the upcoming fiscal year.

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Information from: The Gainesville (Fla.) Sun, http://www.gainesvillesun.com

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