Leclerc Institution could get new life
Quebec's Public Security Minister Stephane Bergeron confirms that the province is talking to Ottawa about acquiring the Leclerc Institutiton in Laval. The federal pen is due to close in September and Quebec thinks it may be the answer to a chronic problem with overcrowding in the provincial detention system.
Leclerc was built in 1961 and can house nearly 500 inmates.
Bergeron says much of the overcrowding in the provincial system is due to implementation of the federal government's omnibus crime bill, Law C-10. Among other things, it imposes mandatory minimum sentences for some crimes including certain drug offenses.
Bergeron says Ottawa has given no indication that it intends to offer the provinces compensation for their added expenses. Quebec predicts that it will need an additional 1000 prison spaces, at a cost of 80-million dollars a year.