Skip to comments.Judge to end Calif. prison receiver
Posted on 01/17/2012 6:40:40 PM PST by SmithL
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A federal judge on Tuesday ordered California officials to prepare for the end of a six-year, court-ordered oversight of the prison system that has cost taxpayers billions of dollars and helped force a shift of lower-level criminals from state prisons to county jails.
U.S. District Court Judge Thelton Henderson cited improving conditions in the prison system in a three-page order that says "the end of the Receivership appears to be in sight."
The ruling marks an important milestone in a process that began nearly six years ago when the judge appointed a receiver to run California's prison medical system after finding that an average of one inmate a week was dying of neglect or malpractice. He cited inmate overcrowding as the leading cause, but said in Tuesday's order that conditions have improved.
He praised the better conditions throughout the system, particularly noted during inspections of medical facilities by the prison system's independent inspector general.
"Significant progress has been made," Henderson wrote, citing the receiver's own report to the federal court last week. "While some critical work remains outstanding - most notably on construction issues - it is clear that many of the goals of the Receivership have been accomplished."
Gov. Jerry Brown's office issued a statement to The Associated Press, with the Democratic governor praising the decision.
(Excerpt) Read more at sacbee.com ...
"The state doubled the amount of money it spent on inmate health care over five years, to more than $15,000 per inmate annually.
"Spending controlled by the receiver increased from $948 million before the receiver was appointed to nearly $2.3 billion by 2008, according to the state Department of Finance."
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