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Iowa inmates may make toilet paper to save money

DES MOINES, Iowa  — There probably won't be any squeeze tests involved, but Iowa prisons could soon be stocking prison-made toilet paper to save taxpayers money and provide jobs to inmates.

The Des Moines Register reported on Thursday that inmates at two Iowa prisons are testing a single-ply tissue processed at a Missouri prison. Roger Baysden, director of Iowa Prison Industries, says Iowa inmates could start processing their own toilet paper next year — if the Legislature supports the idea.

Iowa prisons use about 900,000 rolls of toilet paper annually. Processing it in-house would save about $100,000 a year and would create jobs for about 50 inmates.

Al Reiter, the associate warden at the prison in Anamosa, Iowa, says the paper is not fluffy but the state says it's an acceptable roll.

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