Unions Sue Over California Plan To Send Prison Inmates To Oklahoma

Monday, October 30th 2006, 8:59 pm
By: News On 6

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Two California state employee unions sue to block Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's plan to ship more than 2,000 inmates to other states, including Oklahoma.

The state of California signed contracts this month to use private prisons in four states to house 2,260 medium-security inmates for about $51 million annually.

The California Correctional Peace Officers Association and Service Employees International Union Local 1000 say sending inmates to private prisons in other states violates the state Constitution.

Their lawsuit asks a Sacramento Superior Court to halt the transfers before they can begin next month.

It also says Schwarzenegger overstepped his powers when he declared an emergency to speed up the no-bid contracts with two private prison companies.

Union officials say such emergency declarations should be reserved for unforeseeable disasters.