Agreement reached in Holding Center suit

Buffalo, NY – The federal lawsuit over substandard conditions at the Erie County Holding Center has been settled.

U.S. Attorney William Hochul outlined details of the agreement Thursday morning in downtown Buffalo.

Hochul called the stipulated order of dismissal an historic agreement that will improve jail conditions and protect prisoners rights.

This ends a four-year battle over conditinos inside the County Holding Center.

Erie County will retain two consultants who have been helping the county improve its facilities and its procedures, and will let the Justice Department know what improvements it is implementing.

Erie County Executive Chris Collins called the order a "retreat" by the Department of Justice from the lawsuit it had filed.

Collins said the county saved taxpayers tens of millions of dollars by "forcing" the DOJ to drop the suit.

But Hochul called that "spin."

Both sides are claiming victory under the agreement filed Thursday.