Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Monday, May 21, 2007

New Private Prison Company

The Inland Group has hired all of Centracore's senior staff after it was bought out by the GEO company. The Inland Group tried to buy Centracore but was outbid by the Florida-based GEO.The used to focus on building shopping malls. Now they want to build prisons.

Inland Group Inc. wants to spend some time behind bars.

Known mainly for its far-flung shopping center empire, the Oak Brook-based company is getting into the prison development business. After falling short in a bid to acquire Florida-based prison owner CentraCore Properties Trust last year, an Inland Group affiliate recently hired three CentraCore executives, including its president and CEO, to start up its own prison development business.

The appeal: With overcrowding at many state prisons, it’s a growing industry, not to mention recession-proof.

“There is a tremendous need for correctional facilities in Texas, Oklahoma, Utah, Idaho and California,” says Chuck Jones, president and CEO of Inland Public Properties Development Inc., a unit of Inland American Real Estate Trust Inc.

Mr. Jones, CentraCore’s former president and CEO, joined Inland American earlier this year after selling his company for $356 million to Florida-based Geo Group Inc., a prison owner and operator. Inland American had bid for CentraCore last year, but walked away empty-handed.

The new Inland unit will build and own prisons and other government buildings, mainly at the state and local level. It will lease the properties, not run them.

“We’re doing exactly the same thing that we were doing before. It’s just a different platform,” says Mr. Jones, 58, who is based in Austin, Texas. “I would be disappointed if by the end of ’08 we haven’t done somewhere between $300 million to $400 million in new projects
Real Cost of Prisons

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