Taft CCF will reopen and house low level overflow inmates from L.A. County

TAFT, Calif. -  

It’s been two years since the community correctional facility in Taft was closed.

Now the city has signed a contract to house overflow inmates from Los Angeles County.

The city of Taft owns the Community Corrections Facility and it took a big financial hit when it closed in late 2011.

Now after lots of work of by city leaders the facility is reopening.

"It was kind of gratifying to see it come together we knew it was a good contract for us and we knew it was a good contract for L.A. County," said Taft Police Chief Ed Whiting.

The CCF will take low level inmates from L.A. County.

L.A. will pay Taft more than $11 million a year but because Taft can house the inmates more cheaply, L.A. County will save about $9 million a year.

"For us to be able to utilize the facility is a big deal and then putting our people back to work is a big deal also," Whiting said.

Taft was also listening to offers to house state inmates, but officials say the L.A. county deal is better because the inmates are lower level than the ones from the state would have been.

"We don't have to make any modifications to the overall facility because it is the same level of inmate," Whiting said.

"Both would have been good for the city but L.A. County’s is just a touch better because we will get a lower level of inmate which means we can institute inmate work crews throughout the city," Taft Mayor Paul Linder said.

Five people are already back on the job getting the facility back up to speed.

23 total workers will get their jobs back and as many as forty new people will be hired.

"So that gives us a skilled workforce to train the new ones that are coming in and we will be able to integrate them together and have a really good workforce," Whiting said.

The facility is set to start receiving its first inmates as soon as November 18.

The Taft CCF holds just over 500 inmates and officials say it should be at capacity within two months of reopening.

The contract with L.A. County is for five years.

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