Hoping prisons would bring jobs and prosperity, some rural counties issued bonds to help developers finance new construction. Eight such projects around the country are in default, and others are in distress. In Greensboro, Ala., the roof of an abandoned youth prison began leaking two years ago, and there's no money for repairs, says William Ryan, a retired judge who formed the nonprofit that owns it. He has tried in vain to find a buyer. Above, the front of the West Alabama Youth Services Facility. Administrators thought the building would be used for other purposes when it ceased to operate as a youth detention center. It was not.