An arbitrator has ruled that Governor Pat Quinn should be allowed to proceed with plans to close the Tamms and Dwight Correctional Centers.
The decision is not yet binding… a judge earlier issued an injunction blocking the closures, but that injunction was issued pending the arbitrator’s findings. The state is now expected to ask the judge to lift the injunction so the closures can proceed.
AFSCME had sued to block the shutdowns, saying they would increase overcrowding, and dangers, in other Illinois prisons. The arbitrator says that although it would be wiser to keep all facilities open, the closures would not pose a clear and present danger to workers and do not violate the union contract. AFSCME says it will ask the arbitrator to reconsider.