State Prison System Nearing Capacity

Wednesday, May 2nd 2007, 5:11 pm
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Oklahoma's prison system is expected to reach capacity in about a week, which would force the state to stop receiving new male inmates. State Department of Corrections spokesman Jerry Massie says state prisons currently are at 98% capacity with only about 50 available beds.

Once receptions are shut down, incoming DOC inmates would be forced to remain in county jails across the state, many of which already are at or near capacity.

Meanwhile, the Oklahoma Sentencing Commission will meet tomorrow to approve a projected increase of 900 new prisoners in the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1.

Those additional inmates are expected to cost an additional $15 million, besides the current $163 million that DOC is seeking to house the current level of inmates.