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Musick Jail Expansion Gets Lake Forest OK

The City Council signs off on a deal that would let the Sheriff's Department make room for 1,850 more inmates and allow some medium-security prisoners in the facility.

The city of Lake Forest has agreed to a plan for expansion of the James A. Musick jail, which is in an area between Lake Forest and Irvine, according to a report in the Orange County Register.

The expansion would make room to house 1,850 more inmates at the minimum-security facility.

"This will really bring the Musick discussion to a close," the paper quotes Councilman Peter Herzog as saying.

The City Council took the unanimous action Tuesday on the agreement between the city, the county and the Sheriff's Department, but the county supervisors must approve the deal, which would allow some medium-security inmates in the jail. Read the full Register story here.

Andromeda November 22, 2012 at 12:01 AM
Not one public speaker showed up to oppose the Musick expansion. heh. One would think that at least one man or woman with kids who lives close to that jail would have been at that Council meeting and screamed their lungs out. But not one did. So I no longer care what happens there. If they build a 6 story maximum security prison with Corcoron-like inmates housed there - fine by me. The citizens of Lake Forest deserve exactlly what they tolerate. Now don't whine when there's a prison break and innocents get hurt. Go eat cake.
clipperfan November 22, 2012 at 03:17 AM
Why would anyone in Lake Forest oppose this expansion? Why should this jail expansion be in someone else's town? What makes Lake Forest so special that they should not be impacted by state / county wide prison / jail overcrowding? The people of the State of California and the Citizens of the United States of California have voted for continually more punitive laws and elected the government that promotes them. Exactly where are all these inmates supposed to be housed? Anywhere - as long as it is not in my neighborhood? I call BS. Everyone should spend 5 minutes learning about the prison population development in this country in the past 30-40 years, and perhaps how it relates to the rest of the world. Google is your friend. Easy to pound your chest and demand more and more punishment, but kind of a bitter pill to see it through by paying for it - at the expense of other services or higher taxes - and having more and more prisons, especially when they are in your (gasp) neighborhood. Unless voters / the government of Lake Forest are advocating for a revised approach to corrections in general, would opposing this facility in Lake Forest not be the height of NIMBYism? ps. @Patch - paraphrasing another newspaper? Is that 'journalism'? This story takes second billing to where to find the cheapest cr@p on Friday? Lame.
Homer November 22, 2012 at 05:17 AM
The City of LF approved the matter after the County and Sheriffs Dept. agreed to the conditions of the MOU; which reflected the initial concerns expressed years ago when the JAMF expansion was proposed. http://agenda2009.city-lakeforest.com/SIREPub/cache/2/v4e5rmd0ydbur0jel1rdwvdo/6692211212012091012282.PDF
Jim Gardner November 22, 2012 at 05:23 PM
Clipperfan There is an entire corrections industry that makes a good living by finding out of the way places, building prisons, and then housing people there. These prisons are a boon to the areas where they are placed, and typically they are less expensive than federal/state/municipal prisons/jails which is why private industry makes a profit doing this. Comparatively speaking, land is cheap, wages are cheap, and services are cheap. The value of the land where Musick sits is so high, the County could easily be making a fortune by handing over the Jail to the private sector, moving them out, and selling the land
Andromeda November 22, 2012 at 05:41 PM
Oh, something that Hutchens said during the Council meeting had me rolling on the ground. She claimed that she is doing everything possible to reduce the jail population. Yet Hutchens actively pursued the "Bed for Feds" program that added hundreds of illegal aliens to the County jails so that she could maintain her full employment goals and make money hand over fist from the Federal revenue of $118 a month per illegal. So once again, Hutchens is not being honest here. She only tells you what she wants you to hear. A typical politician. Clipperfan, America has 5% of the world's population and 25% of the world's prison population. See anything wrong with those numbers? American ingenuity has turned the prison industry into a $billion$ dollar industry - literally. And when the prison guard's union owns the governor by giving him huge payoffs ($2M) to fund his campaign you know where the taxpayer's money goes. Prison guards make as much as licensed medical doctors. And that's a fact.
Andromeda November 22, 2012 at 05:42 PM
(continued) Any clown should understand that you don't stick a medium security prison in the middle of residential neighborhoods within a dense urban population. The potential problems are too numerous to mention. If you can't see the trainwreck waiting to happen I can't help you. Finally, as I stated before - I really don't care what happens going forward. If NOT EVEN ONE CITIZEN who lives in the vicinity of that jail shows up to the Council meeting to protest this matter - let them all eat cake. If their property values plummet and dangerous convicts escape placing their families in peril - so be it. Personally, I don't care any more.
April Drost November 22, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I have talked to several people in My neighborhood and no one knew they were planning on expanding. If our community knew more about that than I know for a fact there would have been tons of people there
Myna B November 22, 2012 at 06:48 PM
It seems to me that the prison industry should follow the lead of other commercial sectors in order to reduce costs and address some of the issues mentioned above by moving some of their operations off shore. Inmates with, say 10 year or longer sentences, could be outsourced to off shore operations, possibly in China, Mexico or other country that would be willing to run a privatized prison operation in order to boost their local economy. This would increase room for low level offenders and reduce the operating cost to local governments and taxpayers.
Andromeda November 22, 2012 at 09:28 PM
Well shame on them for not staying informed, April. This subject has been adequately reported in the news. If the Musick neighbors elect to walk through life oblivious to what is happening around them - fine. Just don't complain later after the damage is done. They allowed it to happen through their apathy. Let them all eat cake.
Dave November 23, 2012 at 03:14 AM
Councilman Peter Herzog, who called the plan a "historic" development in the jail's long history. "This has been a long journey." Did he really say this? Why didnt the city council take the $900,000 spent on getting rid of the pot shops and put it towards fighting this Jail? There is no reason to have a Jail amid a residential neighborhood
Andromeda November 23, 2012 at 05:28 PM
Probably because pot eradication programs brings in big revenue from the Feds for the Sheriff's department. Not to mention the assets seized and sold following large marijuana drug busts. Even though the money is forfeited in the Federal courts the Feds share it with the local cops who participated in the bust. The ones who make money off the illegal drug trade are not only the cartels or the idiot who stands on the street corner selling dime bags. Why do you think the Feds still classify marijuana as a Class 1 narcotic like heroin while medical doctors with 13 years of higher education scratch their heads and laugh at them? FOLLOW THE MONEY!!!
Jim Richert November 23, 2012 at 05:37 PM
The City has been fighting this since the mid 1990's. I formed a citizens group Jail Alternatives to Musick (JAM) back then to help stop it, but the expansion was approved by the Board of Supervsiors (along with an airport at El Toro) back in 1996. We found alternative sites on private land the County hadn't considered up near the 241 and other areas. Then the City filed lawsuits against the EIR for the jail expansion and lost. The Supervisors at that time had no interest in listening to South County. This is probably the best deal the City can get considering all this, but it is somewhat meaningless as the County can expand the jail beyoind the agreement if they need to. This is probably why few people showed up to voice their opinions.

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