Mendota federal prison set to open in 2011

FRESNO, Calif.

Work on the prison began in 2005 and was supposed to be finished in 2008. But the prison had funding problems and construction delays. It pushed costs up to roughly $250-million.

A spokeswoman for the Bureau of Prisons says it's slated to open in early 2011.

There is already a warden and a growing number of staff members for the 1,152-bed medium-security prison. The prison is expected to need about 360 staffers.

It's a boon to the area which is suffering from double-digit unemployment.

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