An advisory panel of lawmakers has again rejected the governor’s recommendation to close prisons and mental health centers to save money. The Commission on Government forecasting and accountability Tuesday in Springfield recommended the governor keep open all but one facility – a non-residential Department of Children and Family Services building in Skokie.
Click here for summary
State Rep. Patti Bellock (R-Hinsdale, pictured), the commission co-chairman, says she’s not convinced an adequate transition plan exists. “We want to make sure there are community homes and not only homes, but are there services to be provided in those areas? That’s a real concern also, not that there just be a home, but that there also be services,” she says. The commission’s recommendation is non-binding. It wants the state to keep open prisons in Tamms and Dwight, a youth correctional center in Joliet, adult transition centers in Peoria and Chicago and a developmental center in Centralia.
The facility-by-facility decisions:
Tamms Correctional Center: Keep open, three members voted in favor of closure, seven against.
Dwight Correctional Center: Keep open, three to close, seven against closure.
Westside Transitional Center (Chicago): Keep open, five to close, five against closure. Measures need a majority to pass.