The Arizona Department of Corrections has scheduled a Public Hearing on Monday, August 13, 2012 to discuss the possible construction of a 1,000 bed medium security prison facility in Florence, Coolidge, Eloy, San Luis, or Winslow.   The meeting is scheduled for 5:00pm at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites, located at 240 W. Highway 287 in Florence.  

The Department of Corrections is evaluating proposals from the private sector to operate a 1,000 bed facility.  The Geo Group has submitted a proposal to construct and operate a prison facility on approximately 40 acres in Florence, located east of Highway 79, in the proximity of the existing corrections employee housing park, the Dollar General Store and existing Geo prison facilities.  

The Department of Corrections can choose to award the project to one group or split the award for multiple groups bidding on the project.   It is expected that ADC could approve the construction of one 1,000 bed prison facility or two 500 bed prison facilities in two locations.   

Residents are encouraged to attend to learn more about the project, receive answers to any questions, and provide comments of support or otherwise about the potential project in Florence.   At the meeting, the Director of ADC, Charles L. Ryan, will give a presentation on the process of awarding a bid for the new prison facility.  A representative form The Geo Group will also give a presentation on the proposed location in Florence.  An opportunity for the public to ask questions or make comments will be available.  

Historically, a 1,000 bed prison facility provides for approximately 200 to 250 jobs, which include clinical administrators, case managers, academic and vocational instructors, psychologists, guards, food service employees, administrators, and various office jobs.  

If you have questions about the project, you can contact the Arizona Department of Corrections Procurement Services Unit at 602-542-1172.