Racine inmates to be used for shoveling downtown - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Racine inmates to be used for shoveling downtown

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RACINE, Wis. (AP) -- When Racine finally gets measurable snowfall, county officials plan to use inmates to shovel snow from downtown sidewalks and crosswalks.

   Sheriff Chris Schmaling says the only inmates who can participate are those jailed for non-violent offenses, considered low risk and on work release.

   A Journal Times of Racine report says work-release inmates have already been used to shovel snow from the courthouse steps and to mow grassy medians.

   Snowplowing crews concentrate on city streets first, so crosswalks in the business district don't get immediate attention. Devin Sutherland of the Downtown Racine Corp. says the extra shoveling will make the district easier to navigate.

   He says the inmates are no different from those released from jail to work at regular jobs, and he hopes the arrangement doesn't spark unnecessary concern.

   (Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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