LINCOLN -- Gov. Dave Heineman says he will pursue changes to Nebraska's system of awarding "good time" to prisoners, following criticism of the state corrections department and the arrest of a former inmate accused of committing four murders. Heineman made the announcement Wednesday in an open letter to Sen. Heath Mello, of Omaha. Mello has criticized the Department of Correctional Services under Heineman's watch for not proposing any changes and failing to address prison overcrowding. The "good time" law gives prisoners a day of credit for every day they spend behind bars. A Heineman spokeswoman says the governor believes good time should be earned, not given automatically. The announcement came after authorities charged Nikko Jenkins with four Omaha-area murders that took place shortly after he was released from prison.
Gov. Dave Heineman (R)-Neb. (left), Omaha Sen. Heath Mello-(D)