Residents rally against possibility of prison relocating to Tooele County

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TOOELE COUNTY, Utah -- Residents of Tooele County are the latest to express their opposition regarding the possibility of the state prison relocating to their community.

"No prison, no prison, no prison," that was the chant heard from residents during a rally Thursday across the street from the Miller Motor Sports Park.

It is one of six sites that have been narrowed down by the Prison Relocation Commission.

"I just don't want it in my back yard," resident Colan Carpenter said.

Carpenter was one of dozens of residents to hold signs and make speeches against the prison relocation.

"Enough is enough, we have to put our feet down and say, 'no that's it.' So that's what we are doing," Michael Randle said.

There are three other potential relocation sites in Salt Lake County, and two more in Utah County. Residents in each of these communities have expressed their opposition.

"It's important to us that we make sure our concerns are heard just as much as the other locations, the other sites," rally organizer Katrina Hill said.

Residents said Tooele County doesn't have the resources to support a prison, and they're also concerned their property values will take a dramatic hit.

"We want this to be a commercial development, we want it to be able to grow and contribute to our economy and not be a strain on it," Hill said.

According to the state, one of the key factors in the relocation process is support from the community, and new site locations could still be evaluated.

"There's got to be another place for the prison, not right here," Shelli Olsen said.

However, if you ask Grantsville Mayor Brent Marshall, the state already found the perfect location.

"I think they ought to leave the prison right where it's at, there is more ground unused on site then they are actually looking at buying," Marshall said.

The next prison relocation meeting is scheduled for December 22.

3 comments

  • Jeff Marsh

    Why not put the prison out on Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake? Still accessible for families to visit, secluded, easier to guard and control, away from residences.

    • BOB

      There are time and travel costs associated with the distance the prison is located away from local courts and jails. Why not leave the prison where it currently is?

  • John Hatzimichaels

    Remember George Carlin’s skit, NIMBY? Not in my back yard. If they do get out, what are they going to do, hang around?
    Seriously, in my hometown in Pennsylvania, I lived within one block of our county prison and there was never a problem, threat or issue.

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