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.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Revised Bill May Not Close Prison

The Chieftain
\ DENVER — Flexibility was added Friday to a bill that originally called for the closure of one state prison.
  An amendment in the Senate Committee on State, Veterans and Military Affairs calls for the elimination of 300 prison slots. Those could come through scaling back placements in private prisons or state prisons, or through closure of a prison.

  The committee passed the bill on to the full Senate by a vote of 4-1. It already has passed in the House, but would return there for approval of changes made in the Senate.
  In its original form, HB1421 sought to decommission one state prison that houses 500 or more inmates. The Colorado Department of Corrections said 11 prisons fit that description. Eight of them are in Southern Colorado. 
  While the new approach could spare any prison from closing, it also exposes smaller prisons to closure that were safe under the bill in its original form. Among them are several state-run institutions in Southern Colorado: Trinidad Correctional Facility in Trinidad, Arrowhead Correctional Facility in Canon City, Four Mile Correctional Center in Canon City, Skyline Correctional Center in Canon City, San Carlos Correctional Facility in Pueblo and the Youthful Offender System in Pueblo.
  Private prisons such as Bent County and Crowley County correctional facilities in Southeastern Colorado also now are exposed to losing inmates.
  But the flexibility that is allowed under the amendment attached to the bill Friday could mean that no single prison will be saddled with heavy losses to its head count.
  Which prison would close was at the discretion of DOC's executive director under the original bill.

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