Iowa officials likely won’t reopen shuttered prisons


September 13th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa prison officials don’t plan to reopen four prison facilities with room for hundreds of inmates that had been temporarily closed because of budget cuts. The Des Moines Register reports that the three satellite prison units in Harpers Ferry, Clarinda and Fort Madison as well as a community corrections facility in Sheldon won’t be considered for reopening in the state Department of Corrections’ 2018 budget request to the Legislature.

Corrections Director Jerry Bartruff ordered the closures in February to comply with a $5.5 million budget reduction. An Iowa prison spokesman says staff at those locations were offered positions elsewhere in the department.

Republican Sen. Michael Breitbach of Strawberry Point says the decision not to reopen was likely because of budget issues and a decrease in inmates in the prison system.