On reading about the controversy over the proposed new jail for juveniles charged as adults, I am again amazed that so few officials are questioning its cost ("New push to build jail for young prisoners," Aug. 30).

With a price tag of $70 million to house 120 youths, that works out to nearly $600,000 per prisoner. It seems there must be more cost-effective alternatives.

I realize this would be no ordinary dormitory, but is it really necessary to spend what a family would need to buy a five-bedroom home to house each of the jail's 120 inmates? All of them probably will have no more than a single room to live in anyway.

Someone will be laughing all the way to the bank.

Lisa Pintzuk, Owings Mills