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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Private prison official: Bonuses were paid for cutting costs

A former regional manager for private prison company Corrections Corporation of America says top employees at a private prison in Idaho were given yearly bonuses if they cut costs on salary, wages and other operational expenses and met other company goals. CCA, which has since changed its name to CoreCivic...

Federal prosecutors: No criminal charges in CCA investigation

After an extensive, 15-month investigation by the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice, federal prosecutors today declined to file any federal criminal charges of fraud or public corruption in connection with Idaho’s canceled private prison contract with Corrections Corporation of America. The main reason:...

Sparks fly at Idaho gubernatorial debate

BOISE – Idaho’s final gubernatorial debate showcased the most heated exchanges yet in the race for the state’s top office. Republican Gov. Butch Otter, Democratic candidate A.J. Balukoff and Libertarian candidate John Bujak agreed on little, and often interrupted the moderator and debate panel to respond to zingers thrown out by their opponents, while discussing education, the economy and same-sex marriage.

Otter ad rebuts Balukoff’s CCA claims

BOISE – Idaho Gov. Butch Otter has launched a new TV ad striking back at Democratic challenger A.J. Balukoff and defending Otter’s handling of a private-prison scandal. It’s the first time that Otter’s campaign has directly mentioned Balukoff in one of its ads, though two outside groups have been running ads attacking Balukoff and trying to tie him to President Barack Obama.

Idaho prison staffing problems were no secret to state

BOISE – Administrators and staff at Idaho’s prison agency knew since at least 2010 that private prison contractor Corrections Corporation of America was understaffing the state’s largest prison in violation of the state contract. Idaho Department of Correction officials and CCA eventually came to an agreement about staffing levels, according to documents obtained by the Associated Press, but inmates and advocates continued to complain about inadequate staffing and its impact on prisoners’ safety.

Idaho governor open to state-run prison

BOISE – Idaho Gov. Butch Otter says he’s open to ideas from legislative leaders and others on whether the state should take over a troubled private prison, or whether a new private operator should be sought. “I’m going to listen to other people,” Otter said. “I’m not foreclosing that discussion.”

Idaho inmate pleads guilty to mail fraud counts

BOISE – The Idaho prison inmate who carried out elaborate con schemes from behind bars pleaded guilty Thursday to two federal counts of mail fraud under a deal that enables him to avoid trial. Mark Brown also must forfeit $60,000 in banked proceeds from his scams and surrender the cherished electric typewriter he used to carry out the financial schemes, which duped big corporations, courts and attorneys around the nation over a period of several years.

Judge rules for media in prison case challenge

BOISE – A federal judge has sided with a coalition of 17 Idaho news organizations, including The Spokesman-Review, in denying a request by the state’s only private prison contractor to seal whatever it wants in a lawsuit brought by a group of inmates at the prison. U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge issued an order Tuesday that significantly scales back a broad protection order sought by the Corrections Corporation of America, which operates the Idaho Correctional Center south of Boise.

Board of Correction puts contract up for bid

BOISE – Idaho prison leaders are looking for a new company to run the state’s largest prison after Corrections Corporation of America admitted to understaffing and overbilling for its work operating the Idaho Correctional Center. But the Idaho Department of Correction won’t be allowed to submit its own bid or take over operations at the prison south of Boise, because Board of Correction Chairwoman Robin Sandy said that would amount to expanding state government.