National

Mar 23, 2013 1:54 PM by Associated Press

Holder averts furloughs of prison staffers

Attorney General Eric Holder says he has averted daily furloughs of 3,570 federal prison staffers around the country, staving off what would have been a serious threat to the lives and safety of staff, inmates and the public.

In a memo to all Justice Department employees, Holder says he dealt with the problem by transferring $150 million in other Justice Department funds into the Bureau of Prisons account.

Correctional officers and other staff supervise 176,000 federal prisoners at 119 institutions.

Congress passed a spending bill to keep the government open through the end of September, but Holder says that provided no relief from the $1.6 billion in budget reductions that became effective March 1.

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