Just when I think I have heard or read it all, that thought gets knocked down. I am referring to the article in the Jan. 24 Columbian on Page A2. It refers to HB 1024, which was introduced by Rep. Tarra Simmons, D-Bremerton. The bill favors paying incarcerated persons in Washington minimum wage for work done while incarcerated. Absolutely insane. We the taxpayers already pay for their housing, food, medical needs, education and entertainment, e.g, TV and libraries. Apparently Rep. Simmons was at one time incarcerated. She states that she was forced to work graveyard shifts for 42 cents per hour. If she objected she would be punished. The article does not say how long this was or what she was incarcerated for.
Folks incarcerated are there for a reason and should be working to pay for what taxpayers provide. What about the law-abiding citizens who work for minimum wage? They have to pay from that $629.60 (based on a 40-hour week) for all the things listed. This bill should not be decided by a few. It should be voted on by the law-abiding taxpayers.