Saturday, July 23, 2016
Andy's Angles: Prison
Above is the Luzerne County jail, along Water Street in Wilkes-Barre. An inmate and a guard died in what's described as a freak accident Monday evening. They hit an elevator door during a fight. It opened. They plunged five floors to their deaths, and the same thing nearly happened to a second corrections officer.
It's triggered a new round of debate over building a new jail. The one you see above, even though it has a relatively new tower, is more than 100 years old. Yes, there have been renovations. When you total up all the recent problems, it appears to be a series of Band Aids on a festering wound.
Off the record, corrections officers have said, in published reports, that the jail features unsafe and inefficient designs. The new county manager wants to build a new one.
Here comes the tough part. How do you pay for it?
A full report on the deadly fall still isn't in. It could be staffing issues and just bad luck played a bigger role than design.
But, if fingers are pointed toward a severely flawed and badly outdated building, how can you not pony up the money to pay for a new building?
AT 12:00 AM