Wyoming prisons chief pushes for funding amid low staffing

(Mitchell Haindfield / CC BY 2.0, License Link)
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Wyoming's corrections chief says inadequate staffing is a significant problem in the prison system.

The Department of Corrections director told the Legislature's Joint Appropriations Committee on Thursday that two facilities would be on lockdown most of the time without staff receiving major overtime pay.

He calls the facilities' staffing “critically low.” He says Wyoming needs more prison space, even as Gov. Mark Gordon proposes steep cuts to state construction spending.

The corrections chief testified as the committee meets in Cheyenne to discuss priorities for an upcoming session devoted primarily to the budget.