SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) — Federal judges are giving California two more years to meet a court-ordered inmate population cap.
But in doing so, they are appointing a compliance officer who will release inmates early if the state fails to meet interim benchmarks or the final goal.READ MORE: Berkeley Officials To Consider Making VP Harris' Childhood Home A Landmark
The order on Monday from a three-judge panel delays an April deadline to reduce the population to about 112,164 inmates.
California remains more than 5,000 inmates over a limit set by the courts, even though the state has built more prison space and used some private cells.
The governor said having an extra two years to cut another 5,500 inmates from the state’s overcrowded prisons will make California safer but Republican State Sen. Jim Nielsen said it will have the opposite effect.
“Now life inmates—that’s a murder first, murder second, a kidnap for purpose or three-strike career criminal, who has two serious and violent prior felonies—are going to be given an early release,” Nielsen said.