Federal inmates moved to county lockup in Youngstown

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – At least 20 federal prisoners were moved from the private prison in Youngstown to the Mahoning County Jail.

The prisoners were moved Tuesday from CoreCivic’s Northeast Ohio Correctional Center on Hubbard Road.

The Mahoning County Sheriff said he believes that the shift in inmates is preventative so that the prison is not overcrowded.

The move effectively doubles the number of federal prisoners the jail is housing on a daily basis. The Marshal Service pays $80 per day for each of them. The Mahoning County Sheriff’s Office will get about $580,000 a year to house the inmates.

CoreCivic takes inmates from the Marshals Service and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Under a new contract with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections, the facility is now housing state inmates, adding more of them every week.

“”We expect by the end of the year to be back up to full employment and full population at that facility,” said Youngstown Mayor John McNally.

That would mean roughly 2,000 inmates and 450 employees, twice the number of workers from just a few years ago when one of the private prison contracts ran out.

“That is good for the city in terms of income taxes. It is good for the families of employees who are there in terms of a solid income and health care,” McNally said.

Mahoning County Sheriff Jerry Greene said the private prison is not yet at capacity and thinks the inmate transfer will help avoid the potential for overcrowding while at the same time generating an extra $500 million in revenue for the county.

But after being the target of two different federal court orders because of overcrowding, in part because of outside inmates, Greene insists his staff will keep an eye on things.

“We will keep it at a number where it can be beneficial for us,” Greene said.

The Corrections Corporation of America rebranded as CoreCivic in 2016.