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Solano County Sheriff Criticizes Plan To Jail Low-Level Offenders Locally

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Prison bars, generic, crime

(CBS)

VALLEJO (KCBS) – The Solano County Sheriff expects an influx of about 400 new inmates in local jails over the next three years under a new law that requires county facilities to house low-level state prison inmates.

The prisoners released to the county’s custody under AB109, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday, are career criminals likely to violate the terms of their parole and wind up back in jail, said Sheriff Gary Stanton.

“My population will go up and I’m very quickly going to run out of room. I have jail space. I don’t have staffing,” he said.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

Solano County is already in the process of closing one of its detention facilities and plans to shrink the budget for the Sheriff’s Department by another $2 million, Stanton said.

Without money to hire, Stanton said repeat offenders would wind up serving out their sentences rather than participating in programs to help them reintegrate.

“Without the funding, we can’t do anything. We’ll just have to raft them up. There’s nothing we can do. We can’t put them into programs. I can’t expand my staffing,” he said.

Gov. Brown had planned to use money from tax extensions to help counties pay for the inmate transfer program. So far Republicans in the legislature have stymied his efforts for a special election to keep those taxes in place.

Stanton and other sheriffs around the state were not reassured by a signing statement where Brown indicated that provisions of AB109 would be not be implemented until funding was secured.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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