For the first time in almost 30 years, Kentucky will have no inmates in private prisons after the state declined to enter into a new contract with a facility in Marion County.
J. Michael Brown, the state’s justice and public safety secretary, announced on Tuesday the decision to leave behind the Marion Adjustment Center.
MAC has 794 inmates, including 232 non-secure custody inmates and 562 secure custody inmates, according to a news release. The state has 120 to move out all of them once the contract expires on Sunday.
Moving MAC inmates to other facilities open to the state Department of Corrections and county jails is estimated to save between $1.5 million and $2.5 million per year.
“Through the collaborative efforts of administration officials, legislative leaders, and local communities, we have made real, sustained progress in reducing the number of inmates while better preparing those who are incarcerated to re-enter society,” Brown said in a statement. “This has created, for the first time in a generation, an opportunity to manage our inmate population with existing DOC facilities, county jails, and local halfway houses.”
The Kentucky Department of Corrections is preparing a plan to make sure that inmates in the Substance Abuse Program either finish it or are placed in a similar program elsewhere.
What happens to MAC’s employees will be up to its parent company, Corrections Corporation of America, the news release said. A team from the state’s Education and Workplace Development Cabinet and the Personnel Cabinet may be dispatched to help employees wanting state employment.
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