Budget Cuts Threaten Special Inmate Program

An unusual boot-camp-style program, praised for helping a majority of its inmates find jobs after their release, is threatened by budget cuts planned by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Officials of the 6-month-old program at Peter J. Pitchess Honor Rancho in Castaic said they hope the county Board of Supervisors will find the approximately $3.5 million needed to save it when temporary funding runs out in September. Meanwhile, the head of the Regimented Diversion Program has been told by his superiors not to enroll any new inmates in the 90-day regimen of exercise, classes and counseling after June 11.

Although the county operates other boot camps for juveniles, the program at Pitchess is the county’s only one for adults. Sheriff’s Capt.