Gov.-elect Pete Ricketts promises to bring a fresh perspective to the prison problem in Nebraska.
A legislative panel found state corrections officials use unreliable data and have failed to update policies, including the use of solitary confinement.
Ricketts says he will launch a national search to bring in a new corrections director who will consider a variety of options for improvement.
“And we also want to look and see what’s best practices across the country with regard, for instance, to solitary confinement,” Ricketts tells reporters “So, these will all be things that as we bring that new person in corrections in who can help us evaluate and really look to see how can we do a better job, how can we make improvements that will not only protect the public safety, but will also keep the taxpayer in mind.”
Nebraska has been working with the Council of State Governments on ways to improve the state prison system and keep the prison population down.
Ricketts says a number of steps can be taken to reduce the prison population and keep prisoners from returning once free.
“Because, if you look at some of the previous recommendations, say from the Council of State Governments, this increase supervision of folks once they get out to make sure they getting the care they need is probably going to be part of the solution that we’re looking at for how we address some of the issues with regard to our corrections system.,” Ricketts says.