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Michigan prison inmates recieve federal stimulus payments during COVID-19 pandemic

Prison Bars Jail Cell by JobsForFelonsHub is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit

Michigan prison inmates who qualify have been receiving federal stimulus payments during the pandemic.

The Michigan Department of Corrections has clawed some of the money back for things like court-ordered restitution, but much of it has been deposited in inmates' accounts.

Spokesman Chris Gautz says recent searches have found more than usual numbers of weapons and drugs.  But he says it's not clear if that's due to the money, or the many months of a reduced search schedule during the pandemic.

"When you have this amount of money coming in it certainly can lead to nefarious activity whether that's trying to encourage people to bring drugs into the prison, or it's extorting other prisoners to get their money, so it can lead to big problems."

Gautz says it's not clear if inmates who have children are eligible to receive the $250 to $300 a month per child tax credits that begin on July 15th.