The Oklahoma Department of Corrections is seeking funding for an architectural study to determine how the state can add capacity to the prison system.

Director of corrections Justin Jones told the Board of Corrections last week that the number of prisoners in state facilities has hit 98.6% of capacity. He wants the study to be completed before the Legislature ends in late May as evidence in his request for a $336 million prison-construction bond issue.

“We seriously need those 660 maximum-security beds” that would be provided with the bond issue, Jones told prison commissioners.

Ken Klinger, chief of operational services for the prison system, said last week the state had only 11 medium-security and 115 maximum-security beds available for new inmates.

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