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  • indian_cycle_buyer indian_cycle_buyer Feb 17, 2005 3:49 PM Flag

    stock going down

    Here's the bad news. Foothold in Mich. on banana peel.

    Michigan: GEO scrambles over prison closure.

    http://www.ludingtondailynews.com/news.php?story_id=26320

    2-16-2005

    State rep seeks details, timeline for changes to 'punk prison'

    Asking for prison to continue to be used, either by state or federal gov't

    By JESSICA VANDERKOLK

    Daily News Staff Writer

    State legislators met with the GEO Group and Patricia Caruso, director of the state Department of Corrections, in Lansing Tuesday to continue discussions on the fate of the youth prison in Lake County's Webber
    Township.
    <http://www.ludingtondailynews.com/addisplay.php?ad_id=31&zone_id=104>

    The Michigan Youth Correctional Facility, once commonly referred to as a "punk prison," was the first private corrections facility in the state when it opened about six years ago, and is still the only one. It houses males
    13-19 and is currently at capacity, holding 480 prisoners.

    The GEO Group Inc. was contracted by the state to build and operate the facility, and the prison is now the largest employer in Lake County. GEO employs 229 people there, according to a fact sheet released by the group
    Friday.

    Gov. Jennifer <javascript:openActiveWord('activeword.php?word_id=21');>
    Granholm proposed last Thursday, within her budget plan for next fiscal year
    beginning Oct. 1, that the state's contract with the GEO Group be canceled.

    State Rep. Goeff Hansen, R-Hart, attended this latest meeting and said he's seeking more information from the state.

    "Unfortunately, there were no options the DOC could offer to Rep. Hansen and Sen. (Michelle) McManus," Wills said. "GEO is very willing to renegotiate the contract and would jump at the chance to stay in the community to
    provide jobs and economic opportunities in Lake County."

    Wills said: "There were no positive outcomes, I think, from this meeting we had today,"
    he said Tuesday afternoon.

    Lalonde pointed out that the need for the youth prison, a level-five facility meant to hold the most violent offenders, never materialized. He said that in the mid-1990s the DOC was told there would be hundreds of very violent, very young offenders.

    "As of last week we had 17 under the age of 17 at that facility," he said. "Only 32 are level-five prisoners, and there are 289 level one and two prisoners, which is minimum- and low-medium security. "So we have just under 300 low-security prisoners in high-security beds."

    jvanderkolk@ludingtondailynews.com

 
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