Holy proposes uniformity in preventing contraband in secure facilities

When McNeil Island switched from a prison to special civil commitment housing, there was a gap in the law regarding contraband allowed on the island. Rep. Jeff Holy, R-Spokane, is sponsoring legislation to clear that up.

House Bill 1836 would provide the same rules and penalties for secure facilities like McNeil regarding prohibited drugs and weapons that exist for state prisons. The legislation received a public hearing Feb. 20 and was passed out of the Public Safety Committee today.

“Sometimes the simplest bills do the most good,” Holy said. “Though they are civilly committed, these are sexually violent offenders or accused offenders who still pose a danger to themselves and others. Keeping contraband out of this residential facility will ensure McNeil stays safe for our security guards and other offenders.”

Bringing contraband to McNeil Island under this bill would carry misdemeanor or felony penalties, depending on the type of banned substance or weapon, and the intent behind bringing it into the facility.

The bill now awaits to be scheduled for a vote by the full House. The 2013 session is scheduled to last 105 days.


Washington State House Republican Communications