Governor plans to re-open Big Isle prison by 2014

This comes from: Hawai’i News Now
Jan. 23rd 2013
Lisa Kubota

HILO (HawaiiNewsNow) – Governor Neil Abercrombie announced in his State of the State speech that he wants to re-open the Kulani Correctional Facility on the Big Island by July 1, 2014. Residents had a chance to offer their opinions on Tuesday night at a public meeting in Hilo.

The Lingle administration closed Kulani in 2009 after officials determined it wasn’t fiscally feasible to keep running the facility. Abercrombie, however, is determined to change that next year. Roughly 30% of Hawaii’s 6,000 inmates are held in mainland prisons. 200 of them could come back if the minimum security facility is re-opened.

“What happened in the past was the prisoners went up there, but now we have a chance to bring them home,” said resident Louie Hao.

They would be prisoners who are two to four years from finishing their sentences. The move would also create more than 90 staff positions.

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