Panel Votes Against Closing Supermax Prison

May 2, 2012

The only super-maximum security prison in Illinois may not close after all. An Illinois panel voted Tuesday against closing the Tamms Correctional Center and other prisons.

The Illinois Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability voted 7 to 3 against the closure. Republican Representative Mike Tryon was among those who voted no. He said he couldn’t support closing prisons without a plan for what to do with the structures.

“So I would hope that part of that plan, we would have saw a repurposing of these buildings. That we had a study that we might have reached out on how we could use our secure detention rather than close it. So I’m going to be voting to keep these open. Not because I couldn’t close them. I don’t like the plan on what we’re going to do after we make the closures.”

The Commission serves an advisory role and its vote is non-binding. Governor Pat Quinn will make the final decision about keeping Tamms and other facilities open.