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Lawmakers speak out against closing Ill. prisons

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2012

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – Illinois lawmakers aren’t giving up their fight against Gov. Pat Quinn’s plan to close prisons and juvenile facilities.

A group of legislators said Tuesday that they will try to block Quinn’s action this fall. And a major state-employees union is urging Quinn to postpone the closures until a final decision can be made.

Legislators approved a state budget that included money to run prisons at Tamms and Dwight, along with youth detention centers in Joliet and Murphysboro. But Quinn vetoed the money and said it should be spent on other services.

Democratic Rep. Frank Mautino says Quinn is showing “poor judgment” by closing prisons when the correctional system is already overcrowded.

Overriding Quinn requires a three-fifths majority. Legislators wouldn’t say how close they are to that goal.

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