Thomson Prison Timeline Could Change - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Thomson Prison Timeline Could Change

Updated: Feb 7, 2013 10:40 PM CST
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For years, the Thomson prison timeline has been stalled. There has been no money, so there has been no movement at the Correctional Center. But we are now getting word, that could change.

Senator Dick Durbin says the President could put money for Thomson into next year's budget. If that happens, we could see activity there in just months. But if Thomson doesn't get funding in that cycle, we could be waiting for much longer.

"Here's the bottom line," says Senator Dick Durbin. "We're about to go into a period of 6 or 8 months where there's going to be cuts in federal spending, so the notion of putting a substantial amount of new money into Thomson at this point is not likely. Instead, what we're hoping for is the President to include Thomson in the budget for next year, which begins in October."

Senator Durbin says we should know soon whether hiring can start, or whether we'll start the waiting game yet again. It's something many in Thomson have gotten better at than they would like to be. Completed back in 2001,money problems kept the prison from fully opening. In 2012, the Federal Government bought it , but there has been no action since. And while many don't expect any action, others say they are hopeful.

The Village Trustees met with reps from the Bureau of Prisons Monday night. "It wasn't what we had hoped to hear," Trustee Vicky Trager says, "but it was encouraging. As we discussed, people in Thomson are getting jaded, we'll believe it when we see it kind of thing. What was good to hear from Kathy was how hard they're trying; We know that people are really trying."

In fact, Senator Durbin and Representative Cheri Bustos just met with prison officials to talk about their plans for the facility. Durbin says this is now a federal prison, so it has a brighter future. But he is still asking everyone to be patient just a little longer.