State Prison Visitors Required To Pay One-Time Fee

January 09, 2014

Visitors to the state’s prisons will continue to be subject to a one-time fee that funds maintenance of state-run detention facilities. Arizona implemented the $25 fee in July of 2011, saying it would fund prison background checks, but money from the fee also goes toward repairs and maintenance of state-run prisons.

The Arizona Supreme Court has declined to review a Court of Appeals ruling from last May, which rejected a challenge of the payments by prisoner rights advocates. The high court said the fee is constitutional.

People who were approved for visitation prior to the enactment of the fee were grandfathered in and not required to pay it. Children under 18, an inmate’s foster parents and those who only want phone privileges are exempt from the payments.