The Eastern Correctional Institution will no longer be buying from hardware businesses on the Eastern Shore.
As of this month all purchases are being made through W. W. Grainger Incorporated a large industrial supply company.
Bill Harris, owner of two Ace Hardware stores in Princess Anne and Pocomoke City, told the Salisbury Daily Times that it would be a loss.
His stores used to supply ECI with everything from PVC pipe to coolers and charcoal for the annual employee picnic.
Harris declined to tell the paper how much the loss of business would cost him.
State officials have asked that the Department of General Services to waive the requirement for the prison to buy from the industrial supply company.
There are 33-hundred inmates and 1-thousand employees at ECI making it the largest prison in Maryland.