Up to 800 Idaho prisoners could ultimately be transported to a Colorado prison, beginning with an initial group of 250 inmates next month. The Idaho Department of Correction indicated Tuesday that the number could grow to 450 within a year, but the new two-year agreement between IDOC and the Corrections Corporation of America says that as many as 800 prisoners could be shipped to the Kit Carson Correctional Center in Burlington, Colo.
IDOC already does quite a bit of business with CCA. The private-prison company operates the Idaho State Correctional Center at IDOC's prison campus, south of Boise. But CCA has come under continued fire for its operations, including an October 2011 report that indicated that Idaho inmates at ICC were more than twice as likely to be assaulted as those at other Idaho prisons. An Associated Press report revealed that during a 12-month span, ICC had 132 inmate-on-inmate assaults.
The AP's Rebecca Boone reports that IDOC Director Brent Reinke said moving Idaho prisoners to the CCA out-of-state facility was "a last resort."
"It's not an easy thing for the inmate population," Reinke told Boone. "It's difficult for the department from a monitoring standpoint, and these are dollars that we don't have that we're having to spend. So, it's difficult from a budgetary standpoint as well."