The director of the state prison system says while the state prison population is above capacity, he doesn’t anticipate the need for any new prisons for at least another year. “Kipp” Kautzky told the state Board of Corrections today programs to release non-violent offenders early have kept the prison population level.The prison population is at 120-percent of capacity, but can legally go up to 130-percent of capacity before the state has to take action. Kautzky says it doesn’t look like they will get near that 130-percent figure in the next year.Kautzky says new money appropriated by the state has also helped by allowing him to hire more staff to deal with paroled prisoners. He says the result has been fewer prisoners coming back due to parole violations.Kautzky says they won’t be able to hold the line on the prison population for much longer.He says they’re running out of “low-risk” prisoners to parole, so the number of parolees will go down, while the number of prisoners coming in stays the same or goes up. Kautzky says when that happens, they’ll have to start looking at how to deal with the increase. The current prison population is just over 72-hundred.
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