Today, the Senate Finance and Taxation General Fund Committee passed Governor Bentley’s Alabama Prison Transformation Initiative Act.
The prison reform bill will now head to the Senate floor for debate and a vote.
The bill would borrow $800 million for the construction of four new prisons in Alabama. The new prisons would be modern and efficient, and have been dubbed “mega-prisons”.
The construction of four new prisons would help deal with overcrowding and poor conditions in most Alabama prisons.
Governor Bentley issued this statement following the passage of the bill in the committee this morning:
For decades, Alabama’s prisons have become increasingly overcrowded, dangerous to both inmates and our corrections officers and incredibly costly to taxpayers. I commend the Senate committee for passing the long needed Prison Transformation Initiative Act out of committee today. This bill will allow Alabama to take the next step toward constructing four new prisons, which will provide safer conditions for our corrections officers as well as inmates in facilities such as Tutwiler Prison for Women. Alabama can and should be a national leader in safe and effective incarceration of inmates. I look forward to continuing a partnership with the members of the Legislature to make Alabama a truly great state.
The vote on the proposed bond issue came after two violent uprisings at Holman Correctional Facility over the past five years.