Sunday, October 29, 2006
From LATImes.com: Lawyers for the state Legislature said Thursday that government contracts set to ship hundreds of inmates to four private prisons outside California beginning next month were unconstitutional.
The opinion by the Legislative Counsel, a nonpartisan legal office that provides policy advice to lawmakers, casts a legal shadow over Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's plan to relieve the prison crowding crisis by housing some inmates out of state in lockups run by private firms.
The opinion said that, with certain exceptions, the state may not contract out services that have traditionally been performed by public employees.
But corrections spokesman Oscar Hidalgo defended the contracts, saying that "obviously we looked at all the legal implications — including constitutionality — before moving forward with this."
Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]