Saturday, August 1, 2015

New PA export: State prisoners headed to Mich., Virginia

Inmates "who receive few if any visits" are being sent out of state

New PA export: State prisoners headed to Mich., Virginia

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Pennsylvania will pay $62 per prisoner per day to send 1,000 surplus inmates to the Muskegon Correctional Facility in Michigan, and another 1,000 to Green Rock Correctional Center in Chatham, Va., to relieve prison overcrowding, state corrections spokeswoman Susan McNaughton told me.

The price pays for security, medical care and transportation. Who's going? Mostly, medium-security inmates "who receive few if any visits; who have no medical or mental health issues; all male; and have at least three years on their sentences," so they can return to Pennsylvania for "re-entry programming," she said. "Capital inmates, lifers, are not eligible." Pennsylvania will send a state employee to each prison.

The Muskegeon prison had been scheduled to close. State officials there and in Virginia had no immediate comment on whether they were keeping unused prisons open just to preserve jobs during a recession.

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PhillyDeals posts drafts, transcripts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area business, which he's been writing since 1989.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn and taught writing at St. Joseph's. He has written thousands of columns and articles for the Inquirer, Bloomberg and other media, wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com, distefano251@gmail.com, 215.854.5194 or 302.652.2004.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

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