10 Ways to Protect Your Government Fiefdom

By Flynn McRoberts - 2013-10-29T13:55:37Z

Photograph by Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

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8. Import Criminals to Pay the Bills

Location: Wilson County, Kansas

Wilson, in the southeast corner of Kansas, built a new jail 12 years ago with the expressed purpose of drawing prisoners from other counties. Sheriff Pete Figgins sent an email statewide informing other sheriffs that his facility, with 98 beds, had room to house their inmates, at a cost of $35 a day. "It was built larger than the capacity for our inmates, to generate extra revenue for the county,'' Figgins said. "It's a competition.''

Series:Small Government, Big Dollars