One of the main reasons the governor created realignment - where the state pays counties to take responsibility for low-level offenders - is that California's prisons are severely overcrowded. But even before realignment, many county jails were full too. So just as the state can contract with other states to house some of its prisoners, Republican State Senator Tony Strickland says counties should have the same option.
Strickland: "Now that there's realignment and the locals are in control of this, we should give them the flexibility that if they don't have the resources to keep these people who should be behind bars, behind bars, at least give them the authority to be able to negotiate with other states."
Strickland says the counties could use the money they're getting under realignment to pay for the out-of-state contracts. The governor's Department of Corrections says it doesn't comment on proposed legislation.