San Mateo County Jail Cuts Visits Ahead Of State Prisoner Influx

REDWOOD CITY (KCBS) — The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office is reducing days for inmate visits at the Redwood City jail by one day a week indefinitely as it readies for a new influx of prisoners.

Starting October 1, inmates from California’s 33 prisons will be remitted to county jails as part of the state’s public safety realignment plan.

The sheriff’s office risk manager Tom Merson said because of budget cuts, the Redwood City facility simply doesn’t have the personnel to keep seven-day a week visiting hours, especially not with state prisoners coming within the next few weeks.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

“Our jail is already grossly overcrowded,” he said. “We have a capacity in our men’s jail of 688, and on any given day we run roughly around a 1,000.”

From now on, no visits will be allowed on Wednesdays except for inmates attorneys, said Merson, as officials have to spare the resources to coordinate more than over 300 daily visitors to the men’s facility.

“Visitors have to sign in an hour ahead of time,” Merson said. “Each visit has to be arranged, monitored and then concluded.”

The realignment plan calls for the transferring of 33,000 state prison inmates to county jails.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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