Federal judges are giving California an additional month to reduce its prison population, as negotiations continue over a longer-term delay.
The judges said in a one-paragraph order today that a court-appointed mediator needs more time to seek agreement on how the state should reduce inmate crowding. So they pushed the deadline back from January, 2014 to February.
Governor Jerry Brown and state lawmakers want a three-year delay to give proposed rehabilitation programs time to work. Under a new state law, the alternative is to spend $315 million this fiscal year to house thousands of inmates in private prisons and county jails.
The court ordered the mediator to provide a mid-November update to say if negotiations are still productive.