Florida DOC To Close Seven Prisons, Four Work Camps

January 13, 2012

The Florida Department of Corrections announced Thursday that it will be closing seven prisons and four work/forestry camps by July 1. None of the facilities are in Escambia or Santa Rosa counties.

The DOC said the closures are part of a statewide consolidation plan and were due to declining prison admissions and excess bed space. No inmates will be released as a result of the decision.

The prisons being closed are Broward Correctional Institution (CI) in Ft. Lauderdale, Demilly CI in Polk City, Gainesville CI in Alachua County, Hillsborough CI in Riverview near Tampa, Indian River CI in Vero Beach, Jefferson CI in Monticello and New River CI (both units) in Raiford. In addition, River Junction Work Camp in Chattahoochee, Caryville Work Camp near Northwest Florida Reception Center in Washington County, Hendry Work Camp in Immokalee, and Levy Forestry Camp near Lowell CI in Ocala.

“Declining prison admissions has led to a surplus of prison beds, allowing us to pare down our budget shortfall by consolidating and closing our older, less efficient facilities. We are committed to placing as many affected staff as possible in vacant positions for which they are qualified,” said Secretary Ken Tucker.

Inmates will be relocated to institutions with vacancies that meet their custody, profile, health, education and risk assessment needs.

Pictured: A guard tower at Century Correctional Institution. NorthEscambia.com file photo, click to enlarge.

Comments

36 Responses to “Florida DOC To Close Seven Prisons, Four Work Camps”

  1. excon on May 11th, 2013 12:46 pm

    I am a former inmate of Florida department of corrections….I can honesty say it was the most humiliating 2 years of my life….treated like a violent person when all I do is smoke weed….thrown in a prison with rapists and murderers….then hauls of to work for a bag lunch a day….then if your lucky…you go to a slave camp….and work all day for a bag lunch…made to get in canals with ankle high boots in water up to your armpits….with a weed eater….and refuse if you want….you will go to the box…sounds great rite ?….IM sorry …but I saw things in there that I wouldn’t

  2. excon on May 11th, 2013 12:44 pm

    I am a former inmate of Florida department of corrections….I can honesty say it was the most humiliating 2 years of my life….treated like a violent person when all I do is smoke weed….thrown in a prison with rapists and murderers….then hauls of to work for a bag lunch a day….then if your lucky…you go to a slave camp….and work all day for a bag lunch…made to get in canals with ankle high boots in water up to your armpits….with a weed eater….and refuse if you want….you will go to the box…sounds great rite ?….IM sorry …but I saw things in there that I wouldst

  3. eleanor bryner on January 30th, 2012 10:10 am

    i believe the inmates get enough to eat. they may need more time to eat. my concern is the health care. one inmate has been waiting for well over six months to get skin cancer on head and ears addressed.

  4. batman on January 22nd, 2012 6:49 pm

    the food is not the best,but it will keep you alive.which as we all know especially in todays economy,is better then nothing if they wanted a 5 star meal they shoulda stayed outta jail.the state gives every inmate a jacket in the winter,and every inmate on a work crew gets thermals and a sweat shirt.all inmates on work crews get issued a pair of boots,all inmates that work in the kitchen get issued a pair of boots.its prison,its a punishment forcommiting a crime,what do you expect?all dorms are heated,most of the people crying are gtting thier story from an inmate that is not being completely honest with them i know what im talking about,i was released 3 years ago after doing 18 years ,oh buy the way no the officers do not eat the same meals as the inmates,at least not in any of the prisons i was ever at.

  5. CO and all others fussing on January 18th, 2012 3:22 pm

    Thermals and boots are NOT issued to those working outside! Curious, you need to stick to what you DO know which is obviously NOT what goes on in the prisons!

    Also, that’s not a line of garbage that is being fed to her. It’s the truth that anyone who works in a prison can tell you if they would be honest. Inmates’ families pay for their doctor and dentist visits. They also pay for their prescriptions. They pay for ANY clothing that is not the thin prison issue jumpsuit. They pay for shoes that are not prison issue “slides”. They pay for thermals and jackets because the prison system seems to think that they are unnecessary. Go work in one and see for yourself.

  6. curious on January 17th, 2012 10:18 am

    jcellops- your loved one is feeding you a line of garbage & it sounds like its a good thing your ex doesnt wk for state anymore & instead of you telling someone to reread take your own advice & one other thing it seems to me you continue to be railroaded from believing what your loved one is telling you so help you self out by listening to the people who know what theyre talking about instead of someone that is taking advantage of you again

  7. jcellops on January 16th, 2012 8:40 pm

    to “curious”…you didnt read and understand “CO and all others fussing” comment correctly…they WORKED IN THE PRISON KITCHEN..thats how they know that there are two “types” of meals prepared daily….there is no way that the officers eat the same meals as the inmates- and i dont think that they should…..and i totally agree with every thing that “CO and all others fussing” said about the real financial burden that is placed on the inmates family…inmates(famiilies) have to pay for the inmate to visit the clinic..and, the dentist…its NOT free….thermals, socks, shoes are bought at the commisary, by the inmate(families)…
    to “CO’s wife” …thank you so much, for your comment…(i believe it is VERY accurate) and, a huge, huge THANK YOU to your husband for being the man that he is…
    **my former husband worked in several florida state prisons for years and my loved one has been incarcerated for several years in a fla prison…THATS why i know what theyre saying is absolutely true.

  8. Dawn Holder on January 16th, 2012 6:01 pm

    It would also be beneficial to the state, if they are now concerning themselves with saving so much money, to lower the percentage of time that has to be served… to the 65% instead of the 85%. At least for nonviolent crimes. As far as the way they feed them I don’t know that they get as much food as they would normally eat, as I am always puttting money on my son’s account. However I do not expect him to like it there and I hope that he doesn’t,… that way he is less likely to go back! It is a scam as far as phone calls and the cost of some of that stuff in their canteens. That I most certainly agree with! I am sure that there are alot of things that go on, that we do not hear about and it is awful what some endure. I hate that my son is there, but I am thankful to still have him and I pray that he is safe and he takes a negative thing and turns it into a positive somehow!

  9. curious on January 16th, 2012 11:53 am

    to co & all others fussing- i dont know how long youve been a co but maybe you need to pay more attention to your surroundings because you obviously dont know what you are talking about please learn a few things bfore you put in for sergeant because your co-workers would be in troubl the inmates are supplied a jacket & if they wk on outside crews in winter they are supplied thermals& a pair of boots. the problem is they end up trading them for canteen items or gambling debts.

  10. addy on January 15th, 2012 8:59 pm

    i will said give the parent a chance too see there children grow up by there side we all deserve a chance in life check there crime they commit firs and go from there if they screwed it they know they have to finish there sentence in prison again. .

  11. CO and all others fussing on January 15th, 2012 8:43 pm

    You’re all complaining about feeding the inmates, but unless you’ve been there, you really don’t know and I do NOT mean as a CO. Having worked in a prison kitchen, I can tell you that there are two meals cooked every day, one for the inmates and one for the COs and others.
    Also, you’re fussing about heat….maybe you should add that the prisoners have to buy their own jackets, shoes and thermal underwear. For those who don’t have money, that heat you’re complaining about is all they have. I’d rather pay that high electric bill than have inmates dying from the cold.
    We send these inmates out to pick up trash along the sides of the roads and we can’t even give them sufficient clothing to keep them warm?
    By forcing them to buy their own underwear, shoes, jackets, socks, etc, we aren’t making it hard on the inmates. We’re making it harder on the families out here who have to come up with the money despite not having an income for that inmate anymore. We may pay the bills with our taxes, but in the long run, the largest financial burden is on the families of the inmates.
    Quit fussing and move on to something you actually DO know about.

  12. co on January 15th, 2012 2:40 pm

    i work at century prison….on my hourly counts during the night i could not believe how hot the dorm was with freezing temps outside. i thought to myself they stay warmer than my own family. to” only me”…..it seems your family member is running a scam on you. why would that suprise me. oh and about the food no one said it they would receive a 5 star meal….but they do get enough food on their trays. cornbread, veggies, potatoes and meat and lets not forget that big ole slab of cake. yea they are so mistreated.

  13. only me on January 15th, 2012 2:14 am

    we cant generalize becuse is truth some officer are bad is truth that some prisoners deserve, my husband is there serving 2 years and the food is realy bad in those days cold they dont have even heater,they work for them and hard with out getting pay a penny, all the stuff they give to the prisioner are use even the underwear some thinks they deserve but some of them are not that bad, and some learn from that hard moments of their lives but others are just born to be criminals!!

  14. carol on January 14th, 2012 7:34 pm

    To: The CO’s wife. It’s men like your husband that make inmates come out as different pepole. It’s CO;s like your husband that treat them with respect and dignity. It’s because of CO’s like your husband that some inmates learn from there mistakes and finally it’s CO’s like your husband that make a mother sleep at night a little easier. Hats off and God’s blessings to you husband.

  15. CO's Wife on January 13th, 2012 11:52 pm

    My husband has been a CO for over 7 seven years now. He has come home and mentioned to me that their are other CO’s that have a power trip because they have a badge, which sickens him. He is one far and few in-between that treats the inmates as humans. They are no different because they wear blue and he wears brown. Yes, inmates are there for a reason, and the choices they have made but that doesn’t mean all of them are bad people. Most do come out a different person, then others like to be there because they continue to do stupid things so they can go back, those are the ones that you call “institutionalized!” As far as the food goes he eats a tray everyday from their kitchen and has had any problems with it. They are being feed and have health care. It’s up to the inmates to put in a request to see medical or dental, so again that lies on the inmate, not the CO’s. They can’t help if the inmate won’t ask. Then again most inmates will NOT approach a CO because most of them don’t care and could careless and treat them with disrespect just because they are in prison.

    Now, I can say this because I have a father that is serving life and a brother that has done (3) years. It’s all in how each other treat one another….if you respect the inmate, they will respect you. I can tell you also that my husband knows without a doubt that his back will be taken care of probably by an inmate rather than another officer. That right there should tell you something….he isn’t confident that another CO has his back……now that is sad!

  16. mack on January 13th, 2012 9:08 pm

    they attribute the close to lower recidivism rate and too much bed space. makes sense, right?

  17. alicia on January 13th, 2012 5:56 pm

    instead of closing prisons why don’t they build more which would provived space for criminals and create more jobs?

  18. 357S&W on January 13th, 2012 4:43 pm

    Prison life is bad, but they chose the way they live. Change is possible, but most of the time people prefer numbers to names. As far as our CO’S go they have a job to do, and whatever it takes they should DO IT. It’s bad when people behind bars have more rights than the free world. They should have NO RIGHTS.

  19. curious on January 13th, 2012 4:39 pm

    me, nobody said prisoners ate steak&potatoes they said they didnt believe they were supposed to eat them. think of the words funny & sarcastic & reread LOL

  20. me on January 13th, 2012 3:00 pm

    the food in the prisons are far from steak and potatoes you don’t know what you are talking about

  21. sara on January 13th, 2012 2:25 pm

    I have to wonder if Gov. Scott has any ties with people that own these “privatized” prisons..Just like the welfare drug testing..just so happens his wife owns a string of drug testing facilities..He’s using his position to get even richer off the state of Florida..Thanks to all of you Republicans that voted him in office.

  22. curious on January 13th, 2012 2:03 pm

    chris, i guess your still acting like a criminal, since your still blaming everybody else (you know i didnt do it, it was somebody else) my husband works @ a prison & i know for a fact prisoners are not starved or killed by officers unless your talking about when they cant do anything because yall dont tell, officers cant do anything unless they know what is going on. also, i know severel people who have been in prison or are & yes its bad theyre in, but situations were different, but they had a choice,whether they were thinking or not, they made the wrong choice, so therefore you cant take up for them, thats whats wrong with people today people are still taking up for poor johnny& not making them pay for consequences.

  23. kendra on January 13th, 2012 1:51 pm

    Tiffani, well said……

  24. 357S@W on January 13th, 2012 1:44 pm

    I don’t believe prisoners are supposed to be eating steak and baked potatoes. They are criminals everyone I have ever seen come out they are fat. All they have to do all day is lay in cell and think about what they didn’t do wrong. My opinion is you broke the law deal with your health. It is not fair that you get to see a doctor whenever you need to, but there are people who really need the medical benefits but cannot see a doctor cause our tax dollars are going to these ungreatful prisoners. So put your big boy briefs on and deal with it. Oh thats right our tax dollars buy them to.

  25. Diddleysquat on January 13th, 2012 1:20 pm

    Chris: I’m sure we can believe every thing you say. All inmates (ex) always tell the absolute truth, huh? I have worked around inmates before. I know the routine.
    I have eaten many meals in the prison cafeteria. The food was not gourmet, but it was all right. I’m sure eating it three times a day seven days a week would wax old. That’s only one of the reasons why I try to stay out of prison.

  26. Tiffani on January 13th, 2012 12:35 pm

    They would not have had to close any prisons down if they would throw behind bars all the corrupt Florida Government officials, including all Judges of the Taj Mahal fame who cost $50 million to Florida tax payers’ money, corrupt government officials, unpunished drunken prosecutors, legislators on the take and corrupt policemen.
    In fact they would have had to build a few new prisons if they decided to throw behind bars some or all of the present and past Goldman Sacks employees, most of them now governing this country and the Fed. In addition all the present and past Wall Street people and financial institutions who invented CDS s and other derivatives that brought down the financial world as we knew it. The cost, of course, would be some graft, always expected, for the politicians involved in building these prisons, small cost to the consumer, if you consider the future saving. To this date none of these people has been prosecuted, while thousand of innocents are rotting behind bars.
    And of course, let some of the incarcerated out: the ones that have been unjustly or overly punished as a result of judicial and prosecutorial arrogance. That should correct some of the horrible injustices taking place in this country.

  27. EMD on January 13th, 2012 10:44 am

    I thought I had been reading, for years, about our prisons being “over-crowded.” So, what changed?

  28. charlie w. on January 13th, 2012 10:08 am

    Scott says that private prisons saves money. That I do not believe. Anyway, when the FBI finishs their work, the SRC politicians will fill a prison, I hope.
    The thing about all the prisoners being killed from bad meat, I don,t believe that at all. Just another person that got caught, sent to prison, and now whines. Man up for once!

  29. kendra austin on January 13th, 2012 10:01 am

    Tim!!!!!

    Really, it’s not up to you to judge anyone for their faults or short-comings! You need a reality check!!!!!!!

    This plan will only be sufficient if they plan to implement inmates serving 65% rather than the 85%…..they are far too crowded now!

  30. concerned on January 13th, 2012 9:09 am

    When I worked with DOC privatization was talked about and I haven’t worked there since June 2000 and that was under Governors Lawton Chiles and Jeb Bush, so privatization is not just now being thought about, don’t blame Governor Scott. We as employees sometimes ate in the cafeteria which served the same food that was served to the inmates that day, food was good. I had ideas about how the prisons were run, but once being employeed I had a whole new concept, the actual one. Just going through the hrs. of training brought a whole new realization to me.

  31. ThePowerMan on January 13th, 2012 8:16 am

    There is a BIG difference in eating things that I want versus things that they serve in prisons. I am sure the nutritional value is probably equal but the price is substantially different. Here’s my philosophy: Don’t like what they have in Prison….Don’t do the crime to get locked up!! Simple as that!!

  32. Just sayin' on January 13th, 2012 8:05 am

    Tim,
    You wouldn’t be saying that if one of your loved ones was there. You have no idea why this young man was there and it’s a well known fact (and only logical) that there are people in prison who are not guilty of the crimes of which they have been accused. So…..it would be ok with you if innocent people died, whether at the hands of the guards or by starvation, food poisoning, etc?

  33. Roger Williams on January 13th, 2012 7:35 am

    Both Rick Scott and Ken Tucker need to be fired! They don’t have any government qualification for the jobs that they hold. They are looking at this from basic accounting 101 with no humanitarian, social and philosophical inputs. That not what government is about, FIRE THEM BOTH!!!
    The only way out of this if Ken Tucker will be start doing early release if not then this budget cut solution is inhumane.

  34. Tim on January 13th, 2012 7:35 am

    Chris, you wouldn’t have to worry about this if you stayed out of prison. Be a contributing citizen and you won’t have to worry about those conditions.

  35. chris on January 13th, 2012 6:50 am

    i was recently released from prison and yes this is all a scam. inmates are not getting proper health care. the food is horrible they are starving the inmates. on top of that over 400 people were food poisoned at my camp because the meats went bad when the freezer went out and instead of fixing it they just let it go because it was cheaper. 9 inmates were killed by officers at washington ci with me and hten they changed there medical files to reflect death by natural causes. i was teh medical orderly so i saw all of this. this is a huge scam by florida for money. and the tax payers need to speak up

  36. Oversight on January 13th, 2012 5:48 am

    “Declining prison admissions…” Really? I went to FDOC’s website and from its own numbers there were 88,000 plus in prison around the state in 2006. In 2011, there were over 102,000 locked up. So they say that there’s a decrease; not hardly but maybe its there in their imaginations. Just how does the state say that there is a decline? This is appears to be a smoke and mirror double speak so that the Governor can outsource (privatize) prisons to his buddies.





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