Consultant Recommending Expansion of Prison Facilities


LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- A consultant is recommending that Nebraska expand its prison facilities to accommodate overcrowding.

The report to Nebraska lawmakers suggests a 300-bed expansion to Omaha corrections facilities, a 200-bed addition to the Community Corrections Center in Lincoln and 340 additional beds for elderly and mentally ill inmates at the Diagnostic and Evaluation Center in Lincoln.

The report by Dewberry Architects also recommends additional space for food service, corrections programs and dining facilities. It was produced as part of the Department of Correctional Services' efforts to develop a long-term plan.

Nebraska's correctional facilities held 4,918 inmates as of Jan. 31. That's nearly 155 percent of their design capacity.

A department spokeswoman says the review is taking place along with a legislative prison-reform study. She says cost estimates aren't yet known.