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South Carolina lawmakers OK $92 million in prison upgrades

The upgrades will include new fire alarms, cell locks and observation towers.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina corrections officials will move forward with $92 million in improvement projects at prisons statewide after lawmakers’ approval. 

The Post and Courier reports the Joint Bond Review Committee’s Tuesday approval marks the state’s largest one-year investment in prison improvements. 

The upgrades will include new fire alarms, cell locks and observation towers. 

Lawmakers have acknowledged the need to front-burner prison improvements after a deadly 2018 riot at Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville. But the coronavirus pandemic upended plans to spend $100 million last year. 

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Now the Department of Corrections estimates inflation has added 17% to costs so some projects may be put on hold.

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