Ex-commissioner Kenny given extra month to report to prison

Convicted former Clark County Commissioner Erin Kenny was granted an additional month of freedom thanks to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons' slow-moving designation process.

The agency has yet to assign the disgraced politician to a prison, a process that typically takes between 45 and 60 days.

Kenny was scheduled to surrender to federal authorities today, but that was delayed until Oct. 16.

The court initially recommended she be locked up in the Victorville, Calif., prison camp, the same facility that houses Kenny's former colleague, Mary Kincaid-Chauncey.

The latest recommendation is for a prison camp in Phoenix.

It is unknown why the prison facility changed. A Bureau of Prisons representative said it is against the agency's policy to discuss specific inmates.

The agency receives background paperwork on each inmate's security needs and specific medical needs from local probation departments. It also takes into consideration the judicial recommendation.

There are no set policies that prevent a government witness from being housed with a codefendant convicted in the same case.

Kenny pleaded guilty in 2003 to accepting cash bribes from strip club owner Michael Galardi. During subsequent interviews with the FBI, she told federal agents that colleagues Dario Herrera and Kincaid-Chauncey also pocketed bribe money.

Kenny also revealed to the federal government that she accepted $200,000 for her vote in favor of a controversial CVS Pharmacy and $3,000 a month after she voted in favor of a heavily opposed neighborhood casino.

Kincaid-Chauncey and Herrera were found guilty by a jury. Herrera is serving a 51-month sentence and Kincaid-Chauncey received a 30-month prison term.

Kincaid-Chauncey opted for the women's prison camp in Victorville. Kenny requested the same facility to serve her 30-month term levied on July 18. The court is now requesting that Kenny be sent to Phoenix.

Kenny will leave behind five children, two of whom recently returned to Las Vegas from the University of Southern California. Acquaintances of Kenny said her husband, John, with assistance from the two college-age children, will raise the younger children while Kenny is in prison.

The federal prison in Arizona is about 25 miles north of Phoenix, meaning a five-hour drive for the Kenny family. The prison houses about 323 inmates.

In contrast, the Victorville prison is 188 miles from Las Vegas, or about three hours away. Currently 263 inmates are housed at that facility.

At the Arizona prison, Kenny will be permitted 10 points a month for visitation; each visit on a Saturday or Sunday is worth two points. Five adults can visit at one time. Visiting hours also extend to Mondays and federal holidays.

According to passages of the book "Jailed for Justice: A Woman's Guide to Federal Prison Camp," inmates are required to work full time in the facility. New inmates still going through orientation are typically given yard duty, according to one inmate.

One inmate contributor for the Jailed for Justice book offered this piece of advice for newcomers:

"Take a deep breath as you step over the threshold into the prison world ... Be prepared for a severe limitation of choice, significant reduction of personal status, loss of some civil rights, and a denigrating and demeaning attitude from your keepers."

Kenny, a Democrat, served on the County Commission from 1995 through 2002 when she lost her bid for lieutenant governor. Seven months later she signed a plea deal with the government and began helping prosecutors with their political corruption case.