Prison Health Receiver Moves Forward With Push for Court Order
On Monday, J. Clark Kelso, the court-appointed receiver for California's prison health care system, filed papers in court as part of his effort to compel the state to give him $8 billion for 10,000 medical and mental health beds, the Stockton Record reports (Smith, Stockton Record, 9/23).
The receivership stems from a class-action lawsuit ruling that found that medical care in California prisons is so poor that it violates the U.S. Constitution's protections against cruel and unusual punishment (California Healthline, 8/14).
The Legislature did not act on a bill last week that would have provided bond money for Kelso's request.
Brown Steps In
Last month, Kelso filed for a court order to compel the state to provide the funds, starting with $3.1 billion in the current fiscal year.Â
On Sept. 15, California Attorney General Jerry Brown (D) asked a federal judge to reject Kelso's $8 billion request, arguing that the order would violate California's sovereign rights (California Healthline, 9/17).
Kelso dismissed Brown's argument and proceeded with his motion to hold Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) and Controller John Chiang in contempt if money is not provided to begin construction of prison medical facilities.
A hearing on that motion has been scheduled for Oct. 6 in San Francisco (Walters, "Capitol Alert," Sacramento Bee, 9/22).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.