Page 12-Friday, May 28, 1982-The Michigan Daily
Prisons release .70 convicts
LANSING (UPI) - About 70 convicts
have been finally paroled so far under
the emergency prison overcrowding
order issued by Gov. William Milliken
last week, a Corrections Department
spokesman said yesterday.
Cal Goddard said parole certificates
have been issued starting Tuesday with
more expected through the end of this
week as pre-arranged releases are
AFTER THAT, he said, the release
process should drop to a "constant,
slow stream" over the next three mon-
Milliken last Thursday issued an
executive order declaring an over-
crowding emergency, invoking for only
the second time the 1980 Emergency
Under that law, the minimum terms
order takes effect
of most inmates are slashed by 90 days
when Michigan's prisons are jammed
beyond capacity for 30 consecutive
days. Inmates within 90 days of serving
their minimum term are immediately
eligible for release through normal
MILLIKEN reported the prison
population was 13,426 compared with
the temporary emergency capacity of
Under the law, another sentence-
slashing order must be issued if the
population does not fall to 95 percent of
capacity within 90 days. Prison experts
believe this second order likely will
Goddard said there were 70 parole
certificates issued with Tuesday's date
for prisoners assigned to community
NONE WERE issued for Wednesday,'
but there were 11 yesterday and 45
scheduled for today.
Prisoners have two days in which to
sign the certificates and make the
Goddard said a few certificates went
to prison inmates Tuesday and 43 are
scheduled to go today.
HE ESTIMATED about 70 probably
have actually been paroled so far
because that many notices went out
Genrall more paroles go to inmates in
corrections centers becuase most
prisoners near the end of their terms
are lodged there.
The first paroles issued involved in-
mates whose cases had been screened
in anticipation of Milliken's order, Bod-
Releases now will proceed in "a con-
stant, slow stream over the next three
months," he said.
LANSING (UPI) - Legislation
providing for the early release of in-
mates to ease overcrowding in
Michigan's county jails cleared the
House by a wide margin yesterday with
support from both conservatives and
The bill - approved 78-23 and sent to
the Senate - is similar to the recently
invoked Emergency Powers Act of 1980
which provides for the early release of
prisoners from bulging state peniten-
SPONSORED by House Corrections
Committee Chairman Jeffrey Padden,
the bill requires county sheriffs to
notify local officials whenever jail
crowding reaches a critical stage.
The courts are directed to review
prisoners' sentences after officials are
encouraged to use all other legal means
to reduce crowding.
If that fails, sentences may be
slashed by up to 30 percent and the
sheriff may even refuse to admit new
prisoners except those convicted of
violent acts or sex crimes.
THE BILL was opposed by Oakland
County Rep. Richard Fessler, who
noted his local prosecutor - guber-
natorial hopeful L. Brooks Patterson -
is against the measure. Patterson was
also the most vocal foe of the state
prison crowding act.
Some conservatives, however,
backed the bill, fearing federal courts
will take over Michigan's crowded jails
and require expensive improvements if
the state does not act to solve the
problem itself. The Michigan Sheriffs
Association noted more than 33 jails
now are being sued.
In the gutter
This unidentified University student treads a careful path yesterday as heavy rainfall turns a simple walk into a danger-
ously soggy experience.
State Senate passes tougher
laws against drunk drivers
Wayne County MADD chapter, said he rehabilitation clas
LANSING (UPI)- The Senate over- is still optimistic the measures can be ailt s
whelmingly approved yesterday three law by July 4. ter jail terms.
bills intended to crack down on drinking , yJ" 4 Increasing pen,
bils ntendedtoycrack doe n n derii "THE WAY it is going to work is if all who refuse to subn
drivers by implementing "better, shar- of us use these tools," Landes said. "We other tests.
per tools" to convict and punish im- now have better sharper tools than we * Allowing polic
bibing motorists. g had before.. and once they're passed side breathalyzer
But supporters of the legislation- out work really starts." get drinking dri
such groupand Remove Intoxicated "We have to be in the courthouses quickly.
Drivers-warned even strengthening forever to make sure they're used." Creation of a st
the law is nd guarantee of ending the Among the key elements of the study the effective
sometimes deadly problem. package, which will give Michigan one Sen. Stephen Ma
of the most comprehensive anti- sor of the bills, ca
CONCERNED citizens will have to drunken/driving laws in the nation, are "an important and
work "forever" to make certain judges provisions: for sensible and a
and prosecutors use the law to its " Stipulating that a .10 blood alcohol Michigan's loop
fullest. content is automatically considered a driving system."
The groups cheered from the Senate drunken driving violation, rather than He said if the bi
gallery as two of the bills passed on 29-2 merely using the tests as evidence, estimated 150 fewe
votes and a third was approved 30-1. " Mandating at least temporary loss will die in alcoh
The measures now face House action. of drivers licenses for drunken driving next year.
Lee Landes, spokesman ' for the convictiisinteasirigfiines; requiring
ses and setting stric-
alties against drivers
iit to breathalyzer of
e to administer road-
ests in an attempt to
vers off the road
atewide task force to
ness of the law.
nsma, a major spon-
lled Senate passage
critical step forward
ppropriate reform of
ills become law it is
r Michigan residents