Advertisement
 
Sunday, December 21, 2014
Amsterdam, NY ,
Advertisement

State proposes letting jails shut law libraries

Tuesday, April 09, 2013 - Updated: 4:09 PM

ALBANY (AP) — New York corrections officials have proposed letting local jails across the state close their law libraries used by inmates.

The state Commission of Correction estimated that could save each jail about $5,000 a year, though the 63 jails would still have to preserve prisoner access rights to legal materials. That could be done through computer terminals with online access, similar to the approach in the state prison system. 

Another alternative is submitting written inmate requests to nearby court libraries. That’s current practice of six small jails that have waivers from the library requirement in Hamilton, Otsego, Delaware, Cortland, Orleans and Oswego counties. 

“Under the new regulation, each jail must still provide access to legal materials to all inmates,” commission spokeswoman Janine Kava said. “The significant change is that they are not required to maintain the library inside the facility, and the new regulation specifically allows for electronic access.” 

According to inmate advocates, the change will make it harder for inexperienced individuals to do research without being able to browse law books, especially where they have to wait three days to see if specific requests to court libraries produce the documents they need.

“It’s not comparable access to a law library in our opinion,” said Jack Beck, director of the prison visiting project at the Correctional Association of New York. “These are not lawyers. It’s going to make it nearly impossible for individuals who are not very sophisticated to do their research.” 

The commission proposal would let jails that choose to maintain a law library to pay the costs with profits from the commissary where inmates buy extra food, toiletries and some other goods.

The final rule, if adopted, would take effect May 18.

     

Comments made about this article - 0 Total

Comment on this article

Advertisement
The Recorder Sports Schedule

 

The Recorder Newscast

Most Popular

    Area high school sports calendar
    Tuesday, December 16, 2014

    Amsterdam Police help Schenectady find homicide suspect
    Thursday, December 18, 2014

    URGENT New York panel picks 3 upstate resort casinos
    Wednesday, December 17, 2014

    Port Jackson Media changes ownership
    Tuesday, December 16, 2014

    New tax: Vehicle use tax approved
    Wednesday, December 17, 2014

    Robert A. Savoie Jr.
    Thursday, December 18, 2014

    The Outlet Pass: AHS, B-P set to meet
    Monday, December 15, 2014

    Amsterdam bounces back from S-G defeat with impressive win over Broadalbin-Perth
    Wednesday, December 17, 2014

    B-P senior portrait is given the green light
    Tuesday, December 16, 2014

    Second nature: St. Mary's staff conducts ebola drill
    Thursday, December 18, 2014

Advertisement

Copyright © Port Jackson Media

Privacy Policies: The Recorder

Contact Us

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook