Hearing set for possible closure of Mercer state prison - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Hearing set for possible closure of Mercer state prison

Posted: Updated:
SCI Mercer SCI Mercer
MERCER, Pa. -

The state of Pennsylvania faces a serious budget deficit so the Governor wants to close two state prisons.  

Mercer is one of five prisons on the list of possible closures.

According to the state closing Mercer would save $46 million a year and it's minimum security population of around 1400 inmates could easily be absorbed into other nearby prisons.

County commissioners say the county can't afford the loss of 413 well-paid employees, especially after the announcement of recent closures of the Macy's and Sears in Hermitage. 

They also say the state doesn't have all the right information about the prison.

"We have discovered that some of the reasons they have for closing our prison are because of upgrades that are needed. We've found many of those upgrades are actually already in place or are in the process of being updated now," said Mercer County Commissioner, Timothy McGonigle.

The state has actually paid $20 million on upgrades to the facility which was built in 1978.
And it turns out having a prison in Mercer is a lot cheaper than having one in Philly.

"We understand the cost of operating that facility is less than it is in other parts of the state so we should get a fair shake at making a case to keep it here," said Commissioner Scott Boyd.

In fact, SCI Mercer has the lowest inmate costs on the list of five. The cost to house an inmate here is about $39,000 a year. 

State lawmakers will debate the issue as to which prisons should close at a meeting scheduled for January 23rd in Harrisburg.  

They will make their final decision on January 26th.

  • More NewsMore>>

  • Canfield Trooper shares emotional story, reminding drivers to move over

    Canfield Trooper shares emotional story, reminding drivers to move over

    Thursday, May 25 2017 9:50 PM EDT2017-05-26 01:50:46 GMT

    Cowles is now the face of a recent PSA, reminding motorists it's the law to slow down and move over for stopped emergency vehicles.

    More >>

    Cowles is now the face of a recent PSA, reminding motorists it's the law to slow down and move over for stopped emergency vehicles.

    More >>
  • UPDATED

    Mentor reverses track opting NOT to go with Austintown Superintendent Vince Colaluca

    Mentor reverses track opting NOT to go with Austintown Superintendent Vince Colaluca

    Thursday, May 25 2017 9:49 PM EDT2017-05-26 01:49:41 GMT
    Vince ColalucaVince Colaluca

    Austintown Local Schools Superintendent Vince Colaluca is being named as the new superintendent for the Mentor Public School System according to an official from that district. Colaluca confirmed to 21 News on Wednesday that he interviewed for the superintendent 's post at that school district in Lake County, Ohio. An email from Executive Secretary to the Mentor School Superintendent says that Colaluca as been selected for the job and will be approved at a meeting today. 

    More >>

    Austintown Local Schools Superintendent Vince Colaluca is being named as the new superintendent for the Mentor Public School System according to an official from that district. Colaluca confirmed to 21 News on Wednesday that he interviewed for the superintendent 's post at that school district in Lake County, Ohio. An email from Executive Secretary to the Mentor School Superintendent says that Colaluca as been selected for the job and will be approved at a meeting today. 

    More >>
  • Valley first responders beef-up protective gear during drug calls

    Valley first responders beef-up protective gear during drug calls

    Thursday, May 25 2017 7:39 PM EDT2017-05-25 23:39:49 GMT

    It's estimated that eight people die a day in Ohio due to the heroin and opiod crisis, Trumbull County has recorded a record number of overdoses. Now first responders in the valley are taking new precautions to protect themselves. Weathersfield Fire Chief Randall Pugh says he received a serious wake-up call when East Liverpool patrolman Chris Green accidentally touched fentanyl and overdosed. "We can't help anybody if we get injured yourself," Chief Pugh said. 

    More >>

    It's estimated that eight people die a day in Ohio due to the heroin and opiod crisis, Trumbull County has recorded a record number of overdoses. Now first responders in the valley are taking new precautions to protect themselves. Weathersfield Fire Chief Randall Pugh says he received a serious wake-up call when East Liverpool patrolman Chris Green accidentally touched fentanyl and overdosed. "We can't help anybody if we get injured yourself," Chief Pugh said. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms