NC Prison Population Estimate Exceeds Planned Prison Space

Efforts to add beds to the state's prison system will fail to accommodate the growing prison population.

That's according to recent estimates of the state's growing prison population.

Even when North Carolina completes an expansion effort in 2008, about 400 inmates wouldn't fit in the state's prisons.

And the new numbers show that by 2016, there would be 64-hundred more inmates than beds if no action is taken to address the issue.

So state lawmakers and Governor Easley will likely have to prepare for another legislative session in which they consider spending tens of millions of dollars to target crowded prisons.

The state's prisons director, Boyd Bennett, says it's not an issue that can be put off.