Panel reviews plan to close southern Illinois prison camp

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ELIZABETHTOWN, Ill. (AP) _ A bipartisan panel of state lawmakers will convene deep in southern Illinois to review Gov. Bruce Rauner’s cost-cutting proposal to shut down a minimum security prison camp near the Shawnee National Forest.

The state Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability is scheduled to consider the proposed Hardin County Work Camp closing at a Monday afternoon public hearing in Elizabethtown.

The Republican governor announced the planned shutdown and several others in early June amid a budget stalemate with majority Democratic legislators. That deadlock continues nearly one month into a new fiscal year without a spending plan.

he state Department of Corrections says the prison camp’s 61 workers would be offered jobs at two other southern Illinois prisons. Some local residents say the economic impact of the closing would be considerable.

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