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INMATES CUMBERLAND COUNTY PRISON ET AL. v. DEPARTMENT JUSTICE PENNSYLVANIA (07/21/83)

decided: July 21, 1983.

INMATES OF THE CUMBERLAND COUNTY PRISON ET AL., PETITIONERS
v.
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE OF PENNSYLVANIA, BUREAU OF CORRECTION OF PENNSYLVANIA, SPECIAL SERVICES DIVISION OF THE BUREAU OF CORRECTION OF PENNSYLVANIA, RESPONDENTS. EDWARD F. WHITMORE AND DAVID M. KURTZ, INTERVENING PARTY PETITIONERS



Original Jurisdiction in case of Inmates of Cumberland County Prison, and individually, Allan Bowermaster, Ronald Burns, Jack Corbin, Terry Crawford, David M. Kurtz, Richard Lawyer, Thomas McQuaid, Wanda Myers, Randal Robertson, Daniel Vail, Dennis Wingard, Edward R. W. Whitmore v. Department of Justice of Pennsylvania, Bureau of Correction of Pennsylvania, Special Services Division of the Bureau of Correction of Pennsylvania.

COUNSEL

Samuel W. Milkes, for petitioners.

Sherree L. Sturgis, Chief Counsel, with her Roy T. Stegena, for respondents.

Judges Blatt, MacPhail and Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge MacPhail.

Author: Macphail

[ 75 Pa. Commw. Page 592]

This is a class action, brought in our original jurisdiction, filed by the Inmates (Petitioners) of the Cumberland County Prison (Prison) against the Pennsylvania Bureau of Correction, Special Services Division (Bureau). Before the Court at this time are

[ 75 Pa. Commw. Page 593]

    cross motions for summary judgment. Prior to discussing the issue now presented for resolution, a brief history of the litigation between these parties is appropriate.

Petitioners filed the present Petition for Review in the nature of a complaint in mandamus in 1980. Petitioners requested that we certify them as a class, that we order the Bureau to classify the Prison regarding eligibility to receive inmates, that we order that the classification of the Prison limit the prisoners accepted to those with maximum terms of less than six month sentences, and that we order the Bureau to take any and all appropriate steps available to it to enforce its minimum requirements upon the Prison. Petitioners have primarily asserted as the source of the right to their requested relief Section 3 of the Act of December 27, 1965 (Act), P.L. 1237, as amended, 61 P.S. ยง 460.3 Section 3 provides:

The Department of Justice shall have the power and its duty shall be:

(1) To operate and manage regional correctional facilities;

(2) To provide for the tratment, care, maintenance, employment and rehabilitation of inmates of regional correctional facilities;

(3) To establish standards for county jails and prisons including standards for physical facilities and standards for correctional programs of treatment, education and rehabilitation of inmates; and

(4) To inspect county jails and to classify them in accordance with standards adopted under clause (3) of this section as eligible to receive prisoners sentenced to maximum terms ...


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