Last month the number of inmates housed in Vermont prisons was the lowest it's been in nearly three years.
And at least four prisons had room to house more inmates.
The decline is a welcome surprise for Corrections officials who have been trying to address overcrowding in the state's prisons for ten years but the inmate population kept growing.
At the end of July, 1,566 inmates were incarcerated at the state's nine jails. That was the lowest number since December of 2004.
Corrections officials say the decline has allowed caseworkers to work more closely with inmates and has reduced stress for inmates and Corrections officers.
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