US News

California to Close 2 Prisons and Deactivate 6 Other Facilities

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation announced Dec. 6 it will close prisons in Riverside and Kern counties and disband facilities at six other locations due to ongoing state budget cuts and an initiative to reduce inmate population across the state.

Chuckawalla Valley State Prison in Blythe, about 100 miles east of Palm Desert, and the California City Correctional Facility, about 75 miles southeast of Bakersfield, will both close in March 2025.

In light of the closures, officials said the department is working to “minimize the impact” on employees working at the locations.

“This will include options to transfer both within and outside of impacted counties, and identification of employees for redirection to neighboring prisons where there are existing identified vacancies,” the department said in the announcement.

One other facility will also be suspended, but not permanently closed, specifically: Folsom Women’s Facility as well as units of other locations, including at Pelican Bay State Prison, California Men’s Colony, California Rehabilitation Center; the California Institution for Men and the California Correctional Institution, according to the department.

The facilities and units could be reopened should a “significant need” for capacity arise in the future, either due to a natural disaster or another emergency, officials said.

“Incarcerated people at these locations will be rehoused into appropriate level prisons,” the statement read.

Additionally, affected inmates will be transferred to other institutions or yards.

According to current department data, there are about 92,000 inmates in California prisons, down from 173,000 prisoners 16 years ago at its peak.

Jamie Joseph


Jamie is a California-based reporter covering issues in Los Angeles and state policies for The Epoch Times. In her free time, she enjoys reading nonfiction and thrillers, going to the beach, studying Christian theology, and writing poetry. You can always find Jamie writing breaking news with a cup of tea in hand.

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