Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is a correctional treatment facility?

The proposed correctional treatment facility will not be a typical jail. It is intended to create a paradigm shift in the way the County cares for inmate-patients in the criminal justice system. The focus will be on treatment and rehabilitation, rather than just incarceration. The facility, which will replace the aging Men’s Central Jail in Downtown Los Angeles, will provide mental and medical treatment services, and support programs for male and female inmate-patients. The facility will be designed to provide the appropriate space to house treatment programs for inmate-patients suffering from a mental and/or medical illness and substance-use disorder, and provide rehabilitation programs to re-integrate these inmate-patients back into society.

2. What is an inmate-patient?

An inmate-patient is an incarcerated individual who has a mental and/or medical illness or substance-use disorder and requires a higher level of treatment and care than the general inmate population.

3. What additional services and programs would the correctional treatment facility provide?

The proposed facility will have dedicated space designed to provide educational and life skills programs for inmate-patients. This will allow all inmate-patients to develop skills to assist them in making a successful transition back into society, and avoid recidivism.

Staff from the County’s mental health diversion program, will connect inmate-patients with community-based, mental health programs, prior to release, to ensure that they receive on-going care once they are released, and encourage reintegration back into society.

4. Who would operate the proposed correctional treatment facility?

The proposed correctional treatment facility would be operated as an integrated treatment facility in which the County's Health Agency would partner with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department to seamlessly provide a safe and secured environment in which licensed medical and mental health care professionals can tend to the inmate-patient’s needs. It will implement the best emerging practices for screening and housing inmate-patients with safety and dignity.

5. What would be the capacity of the proposed correctional treatment facility?

The maximum number of inmate-patient beds is 3,885. The proposed correctional treatment facility would primarily be designed for different stages of severity for treating mental health and medical conditions, including space for managed medical detoxification. It will not create additional capacity for the County’s criminal justice system.

6. What would happen with the Twin Towers Correctional Facility next to the project site?

The Twin Towers Correctional Facility currently houses an inmate-patient population that includes inmate-patients suffering from mental and/or medical illness, reducing space for the general population. The proposed correctional treatment facility would allow for the appropriate space to be designed to be able to provide a higher level of care and staffing to address the needs of inmate-patients. Once the proposed correctional treatment facility is completed, inmate-patients will be transferred to the new facility, and the Twin Towers Correctional Facility would revert to housing the general inmate population.

7. Why locate the correctional treatment facility in Downtown Los Angeles?

Downtown Los Angeles is a central point for the County's justice system, health facilities, and community support services.

For inmate-patients who require more acute, and/or specialty care beyond the level to be provided by the proposed correctional treatment facility, LAC+USC Medical Center in Downtown Los Angeles is the most accessible option to provide more intensive care.

8. How would construction of the correctional treatment facility be financed?

If the Board of Supervisors approves the proposed correctional treatment facility, the County could issue construction bonds to pay for the proposed project, with a total project budget currently estimated at $2.2 billion.

9. When would the proposed correctional treatment facility be built?

If the proposed project is approved by the Board of Supervisors, construction would begin as early as 2019.

Due to the need to keep the existing Men’s Central Jail operational, the project is proposed to be carried out in phases. The first phase, which is projected to be completed in 2025, is anticipated to include inmate-patient housing and a new Inmate Reception Center. The entire project is expected to be completed in 2028.

10. Would construction of the proposed correctional treatment facility create any opportunities for local workers and businesses?

The County is dedicated to local community development through the creation of contracting opportunities. As part of the project, the builder and any future sub-contractors are required to participate in the County's Local and Targeted Worker Hire Program. This requires that a minimum of 30% of the construction workers hired for the project come from economically disadvantaged areas of Los Angeles County.

Additionally, the County would require that a minimum of 10% of the construction workers hired must have experienced one or more barriers to employment such as being formerly homeless or previously in the foster care system. Additionally, the contractors will be required to comply with the County's Local Small Business Enterprise Preference and Local Small Business/Social Enterprise/Disabled Veterans Business Enterprise Utilization programs.