A bipartisan panel of Illinois legislators rejected Gov. Pat Quinn's plans to close prisons and health centers in an advisory vote.
The Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability(CoGFA) voted overwhelmingly Thursday against closing 7 state facilities, including the Logan Correction Center in Lincoln. While the vote of CoGFA is not legally binding, Lincoln Mayor Keith Snyder says a facility has never closed down that the committee has recommended remain open. He feels that is a good sign for Lincoln, Logan County, and most importantly the employees of the Correctional Center.
[audio:cogfaruling1.mp3]A Word From Mayor Snyder[/audio]
State Senator Bill Brady says even Gov. Quinn's staff has said from the beginning they didn't want the facility to be closed. He says while it does effect the lives of those who work at the various facilities, it is bothersome he is playing games with their livelihood and even safety.
[audio:cogfaruling2.mp3]Senator Brady on Gov. Quinn's Plans[/audio]
Mayor Snyder says while there is a nice sense of relief from everyone around Logan County, they are not going to celebrate prematurely, as there is a lot of work still yet to do before the facility will undoubtedly stay open. He says he is encouraged that budget discussions in Springfield are going well.
[audio:cogfaruling3.mp3]A Word From Mayor Snyder[/audio]
CoGFA scoffed at the idea of moving Logan prisoners to gymnasiums and infirmaries in other, overcrowded prisons. Quinn is revising the plans but needs more money to keep the centers open this year.