Bed shortage: Idaho to move 250 prison inmates to Texas

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BOISE, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Bed shortages at Idaho’s prison facilities prompts the Department of Correction to soon move 250 inmates to a Texas facility until a long-term agreement with a prison bed provider can be reached.

According to a news release released Thursday, selected medium security inmates from four Idaho prisons will be transported to Karnes County Correctional Center in Karnes City, Texas. Those Idaho prisons Idaho State Correctional Institution, Idaho Maximum Security Institution, South Idaho Correctional Institution and Idaho State Correctional Center. The facility has 550 beds operated by GEO Group.

“We wish we didn’t have to send inmates out of state; we know it creates challenges for the inmates, their families and our staff,” said Henry Atencio, director of the Idaho Department of Correction in the news release. “But as Idaho grows, so does the size of our prison population, and we simply have no more room here at home.”

The inmates will remain at the Karnes County Correctional Center until the DOC executes a long-term contract for the incarceration of up to 1,000 inmates at an out-of-state facility and the facility’s beds become available. The department’s contract request is for up to 1,000 beds for up six years. The department expects to have a contract finalized by March 17, 2018.

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