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Holder averts furloughs of prison staffers

Attorney General Eric Holder says he has averted daily furloughs of 3,570 federal prison staffers around the country, staving off what would have been a serious threat to the lives and safety of staff, inmates and the public.

In a memo to all Justice Department employees, Holder says he dealt with the problem by transferring $150 million in other Justice Department funds into the Bureau of Prisons account.

Correctional officers and other staff supervise 176,000 federal prisoners at 119 institutions.

Congress passed a spending bill to keep the government open through the end of September, but Holder says that provided no relief from the $1.6 billion in budget reductions that became effective March 1.

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