OCTOBER 22, 2004 - Posted at 7:53 a.m. CDT
SPRINGDALE, AR - The state prison board has rejected a proposal to seek an expansion in the market for prison-produced goods. At a meeting yesterday in Springdale, prisons director Larry Norris offered a package of ten ideas for bills to submit to the Legislature next year. Only the proposal relating to expanding prison-industry markets was turned down.
Currently, items produced by inmate labor, such as uniforms, furniture, and upholstery projects, can be sold only to state agencies, plus some nonprofit groups and prison workers themselves. The proposal Norris offered would have allowed prison-produced goods to be sold to employees of the state as well as employees and retirees from the nonprofit groups.