N.H. County Drops Jail Plan for Community Center

CLAREMONT, N.H. — Sullivan County officials broke ground on a $5.6 million community corrections facility after the county ditched plans to build a new $40 million jail.

Local firm North Branch Construction Inc. is serving as construction manager on the two-phase renovation and expansion project, which includes the 72-bed Sullivan County Community Corrections Center adjacent to the existing 44-bed county jail facility.

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Balfour Beatty to Acquire Parsons Brinckerhoff

NEW YORK — International engineering and construction services group Balfour Beatty announced a $626 million deal to buy New York-based professional services firm Parsons Brinckerhoff.

The acquisition is designed to give the Balfour group a leading position in the infrastructure sector in the United States at a time when the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is injecting billions of dollars into the non-residential construction market for projects across a range of segments, including public safety.

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Alaskan Inmates Moved from Desert to Rockies

JUNEAU, Alaska — The Alaska Department of Corrections recently changed private prison contractors and, as a result, will move 800 inmates from a privately owned penitentiary in Eloy, Ariz., to a facility located in Hudson, Colo., at the end of the year. In all, the ADC will house 1,000 inmates at the Hudson prison, with an 800-bed guarantee.

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Number of Confined Juveniles Drops 12 Percent Nationwide

OAKLAND, Calif. — The number of juveniles in U.S. custody decreased by 12 percent from 1997 to 2006, according to a study by the National Council on Crime and Delinquency.

In 2006, 92,854 juvenile offenders were in residential custody, down from 105,055 in 1997, according to the study. The decline includes a 6 percent drop in the number of juvenile offenders in detention and a 14 percent decrease in the number of wards in post-adjudication placements.

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Four States Join Mental Health Justice Initiative

NEW YORK — The Council of State Governments Justice Center selected the leading judges of Delaware, Idaho, New Hampshire and Wisconsin to participate in the Chief Justices’ Criminal Justice Mental Health Leadership Initiative.

Part of the Council of State Governments’ Criminal Justice Mental Health Consensus Project, the leadership initiative was developed to help State Supreme Court justices improve criminal justice system responses to individuals with mental health issues.

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Pennsylvania Governor Plans Parole, Corrections Reform

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Gov. Edward G. Rendell announced plans to implement several recommendations from an independent review for improving the state’s corrections and parole system.

The review by John Goldkamp, chair of the department of criminal justice at Temple University, found the majority of the state’s parole procedures to be sound, but suggested the implementation of additional measures to ensure paroled violent offenders do not pose a threat to public safety.

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Proposed Jail Building Plan Could Cost Fresno County $3 Billion

FRESNO, Calif. — County supervisors are examining funding alternatives for an overhaul of the jail system after consultants estimated the 3,000-bed replacement and expansion project could cost up to $3 billion.

A needs assessment and master plan, developed by Sacramento–based consultants Daniel Smith and Associates to solve the county’s short- and long-term jail needs, outlines the replacement of aging facilities and expansion of bed capacity.

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