Interview: Reporter Alex Walsh on Alabama’s Prison Budget
One in every four dollars in Alabama’s general fund budget goes to prisons. And that’s growing. Al.com data reporter Alex Walsh joined WBHM’s Rachel Osier Lindley to talk about just how much Alabama spends on corrections.
For the past several months, WBHM, AL.com and the Center for Investigative Reporting have taken a closer look at Alabama’s prison problems. It’s all part of the Alabama Media Group’s Investigative Journalism Lab.
Senate Committee Approves Prison Consolidation Plan 03-17-2016
A Senate budget committee approved a prison construction bill Wednesday. The bill would close 14 state prisons and build four large regional facilities. Senator Cam Ward was among the bill’s supporters, citing prison overcrowding issues. “Everyone says well you can’t build — and I’ve said this before — you can’t build your way out of the […]
Bentley Calls Tutwiler Settlement ‘Positive Step’ For State 05-29-2015
Governor Robert Bentley is praising a settlement between the state and the U.S. Justice Department over conditions at Alabama’s only prison for women. Bentley says the agreement announced Thursday is a “positive step forward” for the corrections agency.
What’s In Alabama’s Prison Reform Bill? 04-2-2015
Alabama’s prison reform bill was approved today by a 31-2 vote in the Alabama Senate. The bill contains major changes to the state’s sentencing and probation rules with the goal of reducing prison over-crowding. Alabama’s prisons are currently at almost 200 percent capacity. The bill was crafted by the Alabama Prison Reform Task Force with the help of The Council of State Governments, a nonprofit that works with policymakers across the country. WBHM’s Rachel Osier Lindley spoke with Andy Barbee, research manager with The Council of State Governments about some of the most important policy changes in the Alabama Justice Reinvestment Act and how Alabama’s challenges rank nationally.
The 2015 Alabama Legislative Session Kicks off on Tuesday 02-27-2015
The 2015 Alabama legislative session kicks off on Tuesday. From prisons to the state’s budget deficit to education, this year’s session will be full of important — and even controversial — issues. Here to give us a preview of what to expect is Don Dailey, host of Alabama Public Television’s Capital Journal.
Alabama’s Prison Reform Task Force Readies Bill For 2015 Legislative Session 02-24-2015
Alabama’s overcrowded prison system has been under close scrutiny since the Justice Department started investigating it last year. If big changes aren’t made during the upcoming legislative session, the state risks a federal takeover. Alabama’s Prison Reform Task Force is working to draft legislation to improve the prison system. State Senator Cam Ward of Alabaster is the task force’s chairman. Ward sat down with WBHM’s Rachel Osier Lindley to talk about the proposed legislation, and who has been involved in the process.