Van Wanggaard

Black Democrats ask to join Wisconsin prison task force

Four black Democratic legislators Wednesday called on Assembly Speaker Robin Vos to appoint at least one of them to a task force studying whether to build a new prison.

The state budget calls for the creation of a committee to study the Department of Corrections' long-range facility needs and present a plan to Gov. Scott Walker and the Legislature. According to department data, the state's adult institutions were designed to hold 16,560 inmates. As of Friday, they held 23,397 people.

The budget calls for Walker to appoint an unspecified number of people to the task force. It also empowers Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald to each appoint three lawmakers from...