Arkansas Department of Correction Director Ray Hobbs announces he's retiring in November

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LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — The chief of Arkansas' prison system says he's retiring from his post this fall after four years.

Arkansas Department of Correction Director Ray Hobbs announced Friday that he's retiring effective Nov. 1.

Hobbs has worked in the prison system since 1975 when he was hired as an entry-level guard at the Tucker Unit. He was named the department's director in June 2010.

Hobbs' departure comes as the department is preparing to ask lawmakers next year for funding to build a $100 million maximum security prison to help ease overcrowding at local jails housing state inmates.

A spokeswoman for the prison system says the Board of Corrections will decide on an interim director to replace Hobbs and the procedure for picking his successor.

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