Alabama lawmakers could soon give final approval to a $1.3 billion prison construction plan that would be partly funded with pandemic relief dollars.
As Alabama lawmakers address the state’s prison problems in a special session, critics argue the problems go much deeper and won’t be remedied with brick, mortar and bars.
Alabama is considering whether to use $400 million in pandemic relief funds to build new prisons.
Alabama lawmakers see the possibility of a special session on prison construction this summer as Gov. Kay Ivey’s plan to rent prisons from private companies has been hit by setbacks.
The U.S. Department of Justice says Alabama prisons have not improved despite years of warnings and that inmate homicides have increased.
Alabama is asking a judge to dismiss a Justice Department lawsuit over state prison conditions. The state argues that examples of violence cited in the case do not rise to the level of a constitutional violation. In a Monday court filing, an attorney for Alabama argued the federal lawsuit makes sweeping generalizations about state prison conditions based on isolated examples….