Prison reform bill fails in Nebraska legislature

Published: Apr. 6, 2022 at 7:18 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 6, 2022 at 7:56 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - A bill to help the state deal with prison overcrowding failed to advance in Nebraska’s Unicameral Wednesday.

Focused on reducing penalties to combat prison overcrowding, LB 920 was proposed by Senator Steve Lathrop.

This would’ve been achieved by tackling sentence reform for non-violent felons and expanding programs for people on parole.

”There isn’t a willingness to take the state further to address the criminal justice issues in the state. We’re going to hear things about public safety. I care about public safety everybody does. But there is a lot of people that didn’t vote to give rental assistance to people yesterday. But we care about public safety?” said Senator Terrell McKinney.

Nebraska prisons are currently designed to hold about 3,600 inmates but the population is about 5,300.

Some senators pointed to a proposed $236 million new prison as the solution to overcrowding.

The proposed prison would bring 1,500 beds to the state.

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