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December 9, 1999

Ryan Cites New Juvenile Correctional Center In Schuyler County

RUSHVILLE -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced that Rushville in Schuyler County is the site for a new 288-bed closed-custody juvenile intensive treatment center. Ryan selected Rushville/Schuyler County from a list of five finalists presented by the Illinois Department of Corrections.

"After reviewing the qualifications and needs of the five site finalists, I believe that the best site for the new $34 million correctional facility is Schuyler County," Ryan said. "This new state of the art juvenile center will not only help the state solve overcrowding problems within our correctional system, but it will provide a badly-needed economic boost for the citizens of Western Illinois."

Schuyler County has the highest unemployment rate in Western Illinois. The economic impact of this new facility will be immediate and long-lasting. The construction will take approximately 2 years and employ as many as 250 professional laborers. The facility will employ 300 permanent staff and operate on an annual budget of more than $11 million.

In addition to economic need, community support was an important factor in siting the juvenile facility.

"I have been very impressed with the level of support for a correctional facility in this area," Ryan added. "The organization, persistence and hard work of local leaders in Schuyler County is helping bring needed development to this part of the state."

Over the past 20 years, the juvenile corrections population has doubled. Currently there are more than 2,150 young people serving time in eight state youth centers that were designed to hold only 1,462 people. This new institution will allow at-risk teenage males to receive intensive supervision in a "closed-custody" environment.

The Illinois Department of Corrections received applications from 27 communities seeking to land the new juvenile facility and/or a proposed 1,800-bed women's prison.

"Corrections is honored to become part of Rushville and Schuyler County," said Department of Corrections Director Donald N. Snyder, Jr. "We pledge to be a good neighbor for many years to come."

Also today, Ryan announced the selection of the Pembroke Township village of Hopkins Park in Kankakee County as the site for the new $80 million women's prison.

"My thanks go out to all of the business leaders, municipal, township and county officials, legislators and average citizens who worked long and hard to submit applications for these two facilities," Ryan said, "In the long run, their efforts to map out an economic development strategy will serve their communities well."

The juvenile correctional center is projected to open in the summer of 2002.


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