New Private Prison in Oklahoma

Comanche County, Oklahoma commissioners approved a proposal from Florida-based The GEO Group, Inc. yesterday to build a medium-security prison in Lawton, OK. County Commissioner Gail Turner released a statement today outlining the agreement that will bring 300 new full-time jobs to the area for correctional officers and other personnel. GEO will build its new facility, Oklahoma’s seventh privatized corrections center, across the road from the Lawton Correctional Facility, another medium-security prison that it already owns and operates. The prison is scheduled to be open by January 2010, with a hopeful contract to house inmates from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections. The green light to build the new 1,536-bed facility comes as Muskogee County officials to the northeast also consider allowing for a new private prison to be built in Warner, OK. You can read more about that and other private prison developments in Reason’s forthcoming Annual Privatization Report 2008.