Perhaps we should decide whether we should move the prison purely on what is good for the prison system. That's a novel idea perhaps, since the decision now seems to be resting on other things. Economic development is important, but achieving it should be something we do without sacrificing our commitment to have the best prison system possible.

Many might not volunteer at the prison if it relocates. If the goal is to rehabilitate the prisoner, then I hope we realize the value of volunteers. They serve as role models, they offer the prisoner encouragement, and they give the prisoner guidance. Lock a person up and do nothing to help change them, and you probably won't change them. We need not fewer but more volunteers if we are to make our prison not just a lockup but a place where change is achieved.

Being located at the Point of the Mountain also places the prison close to lawyers, health services and courts. From this vantage point, the prison is already at its optimum location.

Supposedly, tax revenues will increase if we sell and commercialize the prison land. Prime real estate it is, but it is also a prime location for a prison. The reason for taxes is to provide services and good governance, right? If you have to lower the level of services — in this case, lower the quality of the prison — in order to get more tax revenues, you are being counterproductive.

John Jackson