Job Stops Florida from Selling Off 29 Prisons

October 1, 2011  |  

(New York Times) — A state judge ruled on Friday that it was unconstitutional for the Florida Legislature to attach a far-reaching proposal — one that would privatize 29 prisons in South Florida — to “the hidden recesses” of an appropriations bill.  The ruling by the judge, Jackie L. Fulford, stops the state’s plan to privatize the prisons, which was expected to begin early next year. Nearly 4,000 correction workers were expected to lose their jobs or be transferred. The Florida Police Benevolent Association, which represents the workers, sued the state to block the plans.  The Legislature, Judge Fulford said, circumvented the law by failing to fully and separately consider the privatization bill, which had drawn opposition. The Florida Constitution says major policy changes cannot be enacted through budget bills.

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