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State’s Prison Plan Falls Short Of Judges’ Order

— The Schwarzenegger Administration is submitting a plan to shrink the prison population that falls short of what a panel of federal judges ordered. The panel gave the state until Friday to figure out how to cut 40,000 inmates over two years to address overcrowding.

However, the state’s plan would only reduce the population by about 20,000 over two years.

Matthew Cate, Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said, “We felt like the legislature and the administration really just ran out of time before the legislature left town, and so they’re coming back and we’ve contacted both the speaker’s office and the Pro-Tem’s office and asked for their help.”

Schwarzenegger's Administration is also asking lawmakers to approve several things which were already rejected by the Assembly. They include allowing some inmates to serve the last year of their sentences under house arrest and a sentencing commission.

Cate said the Administration’s plan would surpass a 40,000 inmate reduction by 2013 thanks to new construction. Schwarzenegger has appealed the panel’s order to the U.S. Supereme Court.

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