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.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

34.1 Million for El Paso County Jail

The work-release program in El Paso County will be revitalized. Terry Maketa knows that this program is a vital part of reducing recidivism...we are glad to see that it's been given new life.

A multimillion-dollar project is the result of a four to one decision by El Paso County Commissioners for funding expected to help with overcrowded jails.

The money, which will come from refinanced certificates of participation, allows the sheriff's department to reinstate the inmate work release program.

"This gives us temporary relief, it mitigates some of the overcrowding we're facing and it's a very viable option," El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa says.

The program had previously been cut in the county's most recent budget, but can now play a major role in generating revenue to compensate for the project. "The county has an opportunity to refinance some assets and get a reduced interest rate and I think that is good judgment and good use of the tax dollars," Maketa says. "It reduces the payments that they make on existing facilities."

The funding calls for a renovation of the Metro Detention Center in downtown Colorado Springs, making room for an inmate work release dormitory with room for 375 inmates. "This gives us the capital we need to start a self funded program which will repay the debt that we're borrowing the money on."

KRDOTV Article

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