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Okla. corrections panel could select new director

LEXINGTON, Okla. (AP) _ The board that oversees the state's overcrowded prison system is considering whether to hire a new director.

The seven-member Board of Corrections is scheduled to meet in a closed-door session Friday to discuss the selection and possible salary of a new director.

The longtime head of the agency, Justin Jones, announced his resignation last summer amid highly publicized clashes with the governor's office and legislative leaders over the agency's finances and the growing use of private prisons to house state inmates.

The board also is expected to hear from officials with the private company Avalon Correctional Services about the department's decision to immediately order inmates out of a Tulsa halfway house operated by the company. The department cited concerns about infractions at the facility, including brawls among inmates.

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