GEO prison to house inmates from Vermont

WEEBER TWP. — GEO announced on May 19 they have now agreed to house inmates from Vermont at the North Lake Correctional Facility in Lake County.

The Vermont Department of Corrections is currently housing nearly 320 inmates in Arizona and Kentucky, but that contract will expire on June 30. In a press release, GEO said when it expires the convicts will then be moved to the prison located just north of Baldwin.

This two-year contract between GEO and the Vermont Department of Corrections has an estimated worth of more than $30 million. The state of Vermont said this move will save them $2,055 per inmate per year, and the economic impact within Lake County will be substantial.

In the past, GEO representatives have stated they expect more than 500 prisoners will be coming to the North Lake facility as it reopens, and they are currently negotiating other contracts with other out-of-state prison systems.

One of the determining factors in these additional contracts is a bill which was recently passed in the Michigan House and is now pending in the State Senate that would allow level five and level six prisoners (convicts who are considered more dangerous) to be housed in the facility. GEO has stated, however, it has no current plans to house inmates higher than level four at the facility.

GEO stated it is preparing for a July reopening. The finalization of this contract puts the facility one step closer to this goal.