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Washington brings more prison inmates back from Arizona

Post by Joe Turner on Sep. 30, 2008 at 2:49 pm with No Comments »
September 30, 2008 2:49 pm

This is the second batch of permanent returnees. The state penitentiary at Walla Walla has been expanded and inmates from other Washington prisons were moved to the pen, freeing up space elsewhere.

Apparently, these inmates will be headed to Shelton (for reprocessing?) and to Monroe.

I’m told the state Department of Corrections is having its own budget problems and even though DOC is saying publicly that the Coyote Ridge prison will open on time (starting in January), it won’t be up an running. The state will save money by slowing down the opening of each wing, regardless of who is governor.

DOC recruiting is doing better. But I don’t think they have enough guards to run a 2,400-bed prison, and won’t by the end of 2009, either.

DOC Transfers 110 Inmates Back from Private Prison in Arizona

OLYMPIA – The Department of Corrections today returned 110 inmates from three privately operated prisons in Arizona, bringing the total number of inmates housed out

of state below the 1,000 mark.

It was the largest single-day transfer of out-of-state inmates this year. The transfer was made possible thanks to an expansion at Washington State Penitentiary located in

Walla Walla.

The inmates were flown in from Mesa, Ariz. Seventy-six of the inmates will be sent to Washington Corrections Center in Mason County while the remaining 34 will be sent Monroe Correctional Complex in Snohomish County.

The number of inmates housed out of state is now 978. Earlier this year DOC had nearly 1,200 inmates out of state. Housing inmates out of state prevents overcrowding in Washington prisons.

"The plan all along has been to bring those inmates back to Washington," said Prison Administrator Jim Thatcher, who oversees the out-of-state prison program. "We’re grateful that the expansion at Washington State Penitentiary was on time and on budget so we could make these moves."

Washington’s total prison population – including 15 prisons, work-release facilities,

out-of-state prisons and rented in-state beds – is about 18,600.

State Government
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