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House passes bill setting up prison relocation commission

Published: Wednesday, March 12 2014 11:33 p.m. MDT

The House passed a bill Wednesday creating a new commission to recommend where the Utah State Prison in Draper should be moved. (Brian Nicholson, Deseret News) The House passed a bill Wednesday creating a new commission to recommend where the Utah State Prison in Draper should be moved. (Brian Nicholson, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — The House passed a bill Wednesday creating a new commission to recommend where the Utah State Prison in Draper should be moved.

SB268, sponsored by Sen. Jerry Stevenson, R-Layton, is part of a package of legislation this session dealing with relocating the aging prison, freeing up nearly 700 acres at Point of the Mountain for development.

The House sponsor of the bill, Rep. Brad Wilson, R-Kaysville, said the new commission made up of lawmakers and a pair of corrections officials would be prohibited from "working on anything related to the ground in Draper."

Instead of developing the site, Wilson said, the focus of the commission will be to discuss the options for moving the prison, including finding a suitable location near corrections employees and volunteers, as well as courts and medical facilities.

The commission would replace the Prison Relocation and Development Authority that earlier in the session recommended the move. There is also legislation this session to repeal the authority and to endorse relocating the prison.

SB268 passed the House 64-8, but because it was amended to reduce the amount of money available to the commission from $5 million to $3.4 million, it must go back to the Senate for concurrence.

— Lisa Riley Roche

Email: lisa@deseretnews.com, Twitter: DNewsPolitics

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