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News stories tagged with "prisons"

Chateaugay Correctional Facility in Franklin County is among four slated for closure. Image: Google Maps
Chateaugay Correctional Facility in Franklin County is among four slated for closure. Image: Google Maps

Old prisons could become homes for business start-ups

Some abandoned prisons in the upstate area could become home to start-up companies under the Cuomo administration's Start-Up New York initiative.  Go to full article
Franklin County legislator Billy Jones calls for action to stop the closure of Chateaugay Correctional Facility in his home town. Photo: Brian Mann
Franklin County legislator Billy Jones calls for action to stop the closure of Chateaugay Correctional Facility in his home town. Photo: Brian Mann

Another North Country town rallies to save its prison

This year, we're looking in-depth at the North Country's prison industry, how it grew into one of the region's top employers and how it's changing.

Over the weekend, hundreds of corrections officers, families, and elected officials gathered in Chateaugay in northern Franklin County.

They came to protest the latest round of state prison closures, now slated for 2014.

Four correctional facilities are on the chopping block, including two here in the North Country -- Mt. McGregor in Saratoga County and Chateaugay Correctional Facility.  Go to full article
Gov. Nelson Rockefeller: Photo: Yoichi R. Okamoto, White House Press Office
Gov. Nelson Rockefeller: Photo: Yoichi R. Okamoto, White House Press Office

How the Rockefeller drug laws changed America

This year, our Prison Time Media Project is spending the 40th anniversary of passage of the Rockefeller drug laws looking in-depth at how those tough-on-crime policies changed America.

The project began last January and in the months since, we've covered a lot of ground.

We've looked closely at the future of the North Country prison industry. We've asked how mass incarceration has affected women and families. We've probed the national debate over alleged abuse of solitary confinement.

As we hit the half-way mark, we thought it would be helpful to go back and revisit the first stories in the series, reports that laid the foundation for the Prison Time project.

In this piece, Brian Mann looks at the role played by New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller in changing the way America thinks about drugs, crime and justice.  Go to full article
Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Photo: Karen Dewitt
Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Photo: Karen Dewitt

Cuomo quietly pursues all kinds of consolidations

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently announced that he would close several more state prisons, using provisions of a law that allows him to by pass the legislature. It's part of a pattern of government consolidation that the governor has been quietly pursuing since he took office.  Go to full article
Sabrina Jones translates the history and statistics of America's era of mass incarceration into a graphic, sometimes claustrophobic story. Image: Sabrina Jones
Sabrina Jones translates the history and statistics of America's era of mass incarceration into a graphic, sometimes claustrophobic story. Image: Sabrina Jones

A graphic account of America's love affair with prisons

This year marks the 40th anniversary of New York's controversial Rockefeller drug laws -- laws that set tough mandatory prison sentences for drug dealers and addicts.

Many of those laws have been reformed and New York's inmate population has been shrinking dramatically.

But the aftershocks of New York's prison boom are still being felt, from urban neighborhoods in New York City to the North Country prison towns where thousands of inmates are still held behind bars.

We're exploring these issues with our year-long Prison Time Media Project.

In our latest installment, Brian Mann profiles Sabrina Jones, a political artist in Saratoga County who's using comic books to capture the complicated, painful history of America's era of mass incarceration.  Go to full article
Prisons for sale. As two more prisons close down, there a dozen corrections and juvenile justice facilities in NY will be mothballed or up for sale. Photo: Brian Mann
Prisons for sale. As two more prisons close down, there a dozen corrections and juvenile justice facilities in NY will be mothballed or up for sale. Photo: Brian Mann

Act now! Clinton County prison just $140,000!

State officials have set a price tag on the mothballed prison in Clinton County and it looks like a bargain.

The Office of General Services says it will accept a minimum bid for the Lyon Mountain Correctional Facility of just $140,000.

That includes more than 27 acres of land and 23 buildings.  Go to full article
On the inside looking out. An image from the documentary film "The House I Live In." Photo: "The House I Live In," used by permission
On the inside looking out. An image from the documentary film "The House I Live In." Photo: "The House I Live In," used by permission

Why don't we talk more about North Country prisons?

Locking people up and keeping them behind bars is one of the North Country's biggest industries. There are more than twenty jails and prison facilities scattered across our rural region. Corrections and law enforcement agencies provide high-paying jobs from Ogdensburg to Glens Falls.

But the prison industry isn't something we talk about very often. The North Country's Regional Economic Development plan talks about renewable energy and trains and farms and government. But it doesn't even mention prisons -- not once.

Earlier this month, a student group at SUNY Plattsburgh invited community members, faculty and activists to meet and talk about mass incarceration and how it affects communities.  Go to full article
Chateaugay [Correctional facility closure] would not be included in the budget.

Breaking: Chateaugay prison closure "off the table" in budget deal

The state correctional facility in Chateaugay won't be closed under a budget deal being finalized in Albany.

That's according to Dan Macentee, spokesman for state Senator Betty Little.

According to Macentee, Little was told late Tuesday that "Chateaugay [closure] would not be included in the budget."

"The Democrat's proposal" to mothball the facility and spare a downstate prison "has caused a lot of concern in the community," Macentee added.

"I can understand the angst in the community."  Go to full article
It would be devastating to our town and throughout Franklin County. It would have a ripple effect.

Updated: Will the new state budget whack a North Country prison?

Update 10 am: The state correctional facility in Chateaugay won't be closed under a budget deal being finalized in Albany. That's according to Dan Macentee, spokesman for state Senator Betty Little. Latest details of this breaking story.



It remains unclear this morning whether the budget deal now being finalized in Albany will affect a North Country prison.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders unveiled a broad outline of the spending plan last night, without offering specifics.

Democratic lawmakers in the state Senate and Assembly have proposed cutting funding for the state correctional facility in Chateaugay in northern Franklin County.

That differs from Cuomo's executive budget proposal, which targeted prisons in Manhattan and in Dutchess County.  Go to full article
U.S. Rep. Bill Owens.
U.S. Rep. Bill Owens.

Owens: most people will feel pain of sequester

North Country Congressman Bill Owens says the impact of cuts at the federal prison in Ray Brook is on his mind. He says officials there will have some discretion as far as where to cut. "I'm counting on management in those circumstances," says Owens, "to make sure that they do their furloughing in such a way that they do manage this for the safety of the officers and obviously the prisoners."

Owens held a telephone press conference yesterday afternoon to discuss the impacts of the across-the-board federal cuts known as the sequester. The Democrat says the standoff in Washington may only change if the public feels some pain.  Go to full article

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