Thursday, August 30, 2007

CDCR Resumes Construction of Lethal Injection Facility at San Quentin State Prison

SAN QUENTIN – Construction of a new lethal injection facility at San Quentin State Prison is scheduled to resume on September 7, after being halted in April due to budget overruns requiring legislative approval. The budget approved by the Legislature and signed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on August 24, 2007, provides for $182,000 in new funds to complete construction of the lethal injection facility. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s (CDCR) Office of Facilities Management estimates that construction will take ten weeks to complete.

The new lethal injection facility is part of the state’s plan to address concerns with the lethal injection protocol and the current death chamber facility outlined by United States District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel. Judge Fogel requested to tour the new lethal injection facility on October 1, 2007, before a scheduled hearing on the state’s new lethal injection protocols. It is unclear whether that tour and hearing will be postponed until construction is completed, or whether it will continue as scheduled.

The estimated construction completion date for the new lethal injection facility is November 9, 2007, with a complete fire alarm system scheduled to be operational by March 1, 2008.