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Spin Control

Posts tagged: Pine Lodge

Pine Lodge could remain open

OLYMPIA – Washington state will delay plans to close the Pine Lodge Corrections Center for Women to see whether it can stay open as a facility shared by Spokane County and City.

State Corrections Secretary Eldon Vail announced Thursday the Medical Lake center is getting a temporary reprieve from a list of institutions the state wants to close because of its budget problems. Gov. Chris Gregoire put Pine Lodge on a list of 10 institutions earlier this month in her most recent budget proposal.

In a prepared statement, Vail said he’d received a letter from Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich and Spokane Mayor Mary Verner about a “joint use” of Pine Lodge. “We need adequate time to seriously consider what might be developed,” he said.

Knezovich said he and Verner suggested using the facility as part of joint county and city community corrections operation which would include programs for electronic home monitoring of certain inmates. Folding Pine Lodge into the county’s jail system could shave as much as $20 million off current expansion plans, he said.

Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, said she’d had discussions with Gregoire and the corrections department about keeping Pine Lodge open.

“This is a good move if there’s a potential to use part of the facility for city and county needs,” she said.

Today’s audio: Gregoire press conference

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1/7/10 Gregoire press conference

Those reading Thursday’s post (directly below) about Gov. Chris Gregoire’s press conference on tougher bail laws and other changes to combat the rash of police officer shootings might be asking “What else did she have to say?”

Here’s you chance to find out. The complete press conference, captured on digital audio, is above.

No bail for dangerous criminals could be on Nov. ballot

OLYMPIA – Judges should be able to deny bail to criminal suspects who are thought to be “inherently dangerous” to the public, Gov. Chris Gregoire and representatives of the state’s law enforcement system said Wednesday.

Gregoire said she will ask the Legislature to give voters the right this November to pass a constitutional amendment giving judges more flexibility to deny bail. They should not be limited to suspects accused of murder, who can now be held without bail, or someone facing a third-strike felony which could result in a life sentence upon conviction, she said.  

“You may have someone who wants out on bail today who is an absolute harm to the public at large,” Gregoire said at a press conference where she was flanked by leaders of organizations representing sheriffs and police chiefs,  officers and deputies, prosecutors and corrections officials. “I don’t believe it will be overused, misused. I think discretion is the better course.”

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About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

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