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Rutherford calls for strategic closure of prisons

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013 12:00 p.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford is renewing a call for more "strategic planning" to be put in place for the state's major prisons and mental health centers.

Rutherford is one of four Republicans running for governor and spoke during a campaign news conference in Springfield Wednesday.

He says previous governors have "abruptly" closed state facilities, including correctional centers in Dwight, Tamms and Joliet. He says those decisions hurt state employees and businesses around Illinois.

The Chenoa Republican says he'll work with agencies to develop a long-range plan if he's elected.

Rutherford made a similar call last year following an Associated Press report that found the state's prison population was at a record high.

Rutherford says prisons are still "dramatically overcrowded." He said he'd consider re-opening closed prisons, including Tamms.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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