Possible prison plan for the upcoming special session

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OZARK, Ala. (WDHN) — House and Senate caucuses have met this week to discuss the possible special session that will have to do with prisons.

The Alabama prison system looks to be on the agenda of lawmakers and they look to have put together a possible plan.

The special session later this month or early October will tackle prison reform.

Overcrowded and antiquated state prisons has long been a serious issue in the country. It’s hoped a solution can be reached among lawmakers to replace and build new facilities to handle the ever growing prison population.

Ozark State Representative Steve Clouse says several of the lawmakers may have hammered out a solution and it would be addressed during the special session:

“Since the first of June, we have had a number of House and Senate members meeting with the Governors Office to try to figure out where to go with the prison situation,” said State Representative Steve Clouse.

Lawmakers have been given the green light to use the millions from the American Recovery Plan to go to the department of corrections and that will save taxpayer dollars.

“So by putting that cash forward, that is going to save us and the taxpayers a tremendous amount of dollars on interest income on a bond,” said Clouse.

The plan includes building two mega facilities in Elmore and Escambia Counties. Phase two includes renovations to two prisons and the rebuilding of two prisons. Clouse says that if this bill passes, that construction will begin the first quarter of 2022.

“It will allow us to begin construction probably by the first quarter of 2022. To put some some shovels in the ground,” said Clouse

Clouse also says that this is a win in regards to saving on interest on bonds, it allows to work with the Department of Justice compliance and the public safety of future generations.

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