Texas Considers Closing Four State Prisons

Four Texas state prisons could be closed as lawmakers consider reducing the Texas Department of Criminal Justice budget by $40 million.

If the final state budget is passed, this could mark the largest reduction in state's history.  

Last Friday, the House's chief budget writer, John Zerwas, said the House is looking for $4 billion to cut from its initial proposal.  

Two weeks ago, officials confirmed the 500-bed Ware Unit in Colorado City was likely to be closed while Bartlett State Jail, West Texas Intermediate Sanction Facility and Bridgeport Pre-Parole Facility are listed for possible closure.

Bartlett State Jail houses just over 1,000 inmates, West Texas Intermediate Sanction Facility houses 275 offenders and Bridgeport Pre-Parole Facility houses 200 inmates.

In addition, Rudd Unit in Brownfield would be converted to an intermediate sanction facility for housing parole violators. 

House Appropriations Committee chairman said a decision on the closing of prisons will be made in the coming days by a subcommittee headed by Oscar Longoria (D-Mission).  He said the proposed cuts have been closely reviewed and discussed.

The final decision on the cuts will be made by the Senate Finance and House Appropriations committees.  

Since the Texas prison system is facing serious budget problems and the local courts are not going to quit sentencing people, overcrowding will become a problem. Our book How To Prepare A Texas Parole Packet can be the difference between making parole and getting denied.  How to Prepare a Texas Parole Package is filled with easy to understand explanations and forms with each section of the book. How to Prepare a Texas Parole Package is available in printed form (which can be mailed to an inmate) or as a downloadable PDF.