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Livelihoods on the Line in Lincoln

Earlier this spring, Illinois Governor Pritzker announced his plan to demolish and reconstruct the Logan Correctional Center. The prison is currently situated in the center of Logan County in the City of Lincoln, but it may not be rebuilt there.

On May 10, the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) testified in a legislative hearing that it is considering relocating the correctional center closer to the Chicago suburbs. That move, officials say, would affect the livelihood of hundreds of families and would be a blow to the economically struggling community of Lincoln.

“Logan Correctional is an instrumental part of Lincoln and its surrounding communities. It provides more than 500 direct jobs, hundreds more indirect jobs, and immeasurable local economic benefits,” read a joint statement from State Representative Bill Hauter and Senator Sally Turner and other local leaders. “We will continue to fight for each and every one of these jobs and ensure our communities get the answers they deserve from the Governor’s Administration.”

The City of Lincoln has seen more than its fair share of economic devastation in recent years. In 2019, the Ardagh Group shut down its Lincoln manufacturing plant, cutting 150 local jobs. The 157-year-old Lincoln College permanently closed its doors in 2022 following the Pandemic and a cyber strike. In October of last year, Lincoln Christian University also shut down. These closures came on the heels of the shuttering of the Lincoln/Logan Chamber of Commerce in 2017. The additional loss of jobs that would come with moving the prison out of Logan County would further devastate the community.

Hauter and other officials held a Facebook Live Townhall meeting last week to provide information about the Governor’s plans for Logan Correctional Center and hear from local residents about the impact of the possible relocation. Officials and residents say the Governor has not held public meetings but should before making a decision that would inflict further hardship on the residents of this area.


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