Nebraska Mulls New Prison Construction & Alternatives


(03/11/2014)
Consultants hired by the state of Nebraska to tackle the growing correctional overcrowding problem have delivered a new master plan that relies heavily on construction and expansion. Nebraska has been grappling with a steadily increasing prison population for several years. As of Jan. 31, the state’s correctional system housed nearly 5,000 inmates, more than 150 percent of its intended capacity.

Allegan County Debuts New Jail

By Jessie Fetterling
(03/11/2014)
The new $20 million Allegan County Sheriff’s Office and Corrections Center debuted to the public on Saturday. The correctional officers, followed by the inmates, will move into the 35,378-square-foot facility in the next few months.

Ellis County Courthouse to Undergo Renovation

By Jessie Fetterling
(03/05/2014)
Plans that include a renovation and addition to the Ellis County Law Enforcement Center and a remodel of the Ellis County Courthouse are underway in Hays, Kan. The project’s architect, Kansas City, Mo.-based Treanor Architects, is currently making final changes to the remodeling plan for contractors to consider and bid on later this spring.

Maine to Examine Prison Health Care


(03/05/2014)
Concerns over prison health care have prompted Maine legislators to approve an Office of Program Evaluation & Government Accountability (OPEGA) review of the state’s prison health system. The Legislative Oversight Committee announced its decision after receiving a joint letter from several agencies outlining poor inmate health care experiences.

Less-than-Lethal Active Denial Systems

By Alex and Dorothy Fox
(02/26/2014)
The law enforcement and corrections communities are always looking for new less-than-lethal technologies to add to their arsenal to effectively deal with a myriad of scenarios that call for some level of force. No single less-than-lethal technology fits every situation. Some are designed to target one individual while others are intended for use on multiple subjects. Existing options include tasers, rubber bullets, chemical agents, sound cannons, water cannons, slippery foam, electro-muscular disruption technology, special impact munitions and temporary visual impairment devices.

Cuomo Announces Prison Education Plan


(02/26/2014)
A recent proposal by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) to expand inmate education spending is receiving some backlash. The proposed initiative would help prison inmates earn associate and bachelor’s degrees while incarcerated, and is being touted by Cuomo as a way to save money and lower recidivism rates. The governor first announced the new plan alongside New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio in Albany on Feb. 16 at the state’s Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic & Asian Legislative Caucus.

Maryland Cracks Down on Prison Cell Phone Use


(02/12/2014)
Nearly six months after implementing a pilot program targeting contraband cell phones in prisons, Maryland correctional officials have officially adopted the new technology. Gov. George O’Malley unveiled the new “managed access” system at a press conference in the Baltimore City Detention Center (BCDC) in early February.

Stanislaus County Jail Closes Inmate Work Quarters

By Jessie Fetterling
(02/12/2014)
A recent staffing shortage in the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department is causing the early release of prisoners and several closures, resulting in less bed capacity available in the county. About 60 prisoners were released in the past week as officials prepared for temporary closure of the inmate work quarters at the downtown Modesto jail, Capt. Bill Duncan told The Modesto Bee.

Denton County Jail Expansion in Progress


(02/05/2014)
The first phase of the $26.7 million expansion and renovation of the Denton County Jail is well underway and should be completed in September. Satterfield & Pontikes Construction (S&P) is serving as the general contractor, while HDR is serving as the architect. Both have offices in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Cumberland County Dedicates New Jail Expansion


(02/05/2014)
After a 17-month construction process, Cumberland County officials recently celebrated the dedication of the expanded Cumberland County Detention Center. The roughly $15 million project wrapped up last month, and correctional staff began moving inmates into the new and improved facility immediately following the dedication.