Aided by a rapid decline in the state's inmate population, California prison officials are proposing a dramatic change in the way they do business and moving to take control of the system back from the federal courts.
In a plan announced Monday to close one prison, revamp others and scrap most of a $6 billion prison construction plan, officials said they will save the state billions of dollars in coming years.
"It's a massive change," Matthew Cate, secretary of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said at a Capitol news conference.
Among the proposals:
• Close the California Rehabilitation Center in Norco, where about 1,200 correctional employees work and 3,900 inmates are housed.
• End contracts with out-of-state prisons and return 9,500 inmates to California by 2016.
• Eliminate about 6,400 positions.
• Halt most of a prison-expansion program, saving $4.1 billion in building costs.