Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Supporters mobilize against lawmakers' decision to close Hillsborough Correctional Institution

TALLAHASSEE ­— Legislative leaders decided in weekend budget talks to close Hillsborough Correctional Institution in Riverview, the state's only faith- and character-based prison for women.

A show of force by HCI supporters last year kept the prison open and those advocates, including retired women from Sun City Center, began mobilizing again Sunday.

But the debt-ridden Department of Corrections developed criteria that resulted in the prison being rated the least efficient in the state.

"I'm disappointed," said Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey. "I think the volunteers and the former inmates there showed us the success of that facility."

Hillsborough's recidivism rate is much lower than most others.

Fasano speculated that Hillsborough's closing may have been "a little bit of payback" against senators from Tampa Bay, all but one of whom helped kill a proposed expansion of prison privatization.

Closing Hillsborough will save about $10 million, and the prison's 275 inmates will be transferred to a women's lockup in Lowell. The approximate 130 full-time officers will be offered jobs at other prisons, and HCI guards have already been assigned new jobs elsewhere.

Supporters mobilize against lawmakers' decision to close Hillsborough Correctional Institution 03/04/12 [Last modified: Sunday, March 4, 2012 11:04pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Kidpreneurs — and adults — capitalize on gooey, squishy Slime craze


    First it was Play-Doh. Then Gak. There have been dozens of variations for sale of the oozy, gooey, squishable, stretchable kids' toy through the generations.

    Aletheia Venator and Berlyn Perdomo demonstrate the stretchiness of their slime. - Berlyn Perdomo and her friend, Aletheia Venator, both 13, make and sell slime which can be seen on their instagram site @the.real.slimeshadyy [JIM DAMASKE   |   Times]
  2. After last year's drug-related deaths, Tampa's Sunset Music Festival says it's stepping up safety, security

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — Alex Haynes worked three jobs. He had a fiance and an infant son. He owned his own home in Melbourne. Last summer, the 22-year-old attended the Sunset Musical Festival at Raymond James Stadium.

    He left in an ambulance.

    Last year’s Sunset Music Festival was marked by dozens of medical emergencies.
  3. What you need to know for Friday, May 26


    Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.

    Read this morning why Florida's most prized sweet corn is nearly extinct. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. The last farmer of Florida's prized Zellwood corn is thinking of packing it in


    MOUNT DORA — Hank Scott steps out of his pickup between the long rows and snaps off an ear that grows about bellybutton-high on the forehead-high stalks.

    Hank Scott, co-owner of Long and Scott Farms, shucks an ear of corn on the farm in Mount Dora, Fla., on Wednesday, May 10, 2017. The farm specializes in Scott's Zellwood Triple-Sweet Gourmet Corn. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  5. Trump's rock-solid support shows in Pennsylvania: 'Why can't we be friends with Russia'


    HAZLETON, Pa. — To many here, the fires in Washington are distant and unimportant, a confusing jangle of news about Russia whipped up by forces set on ruining President Donald Trump.

    A street in downtown Hazleton, Pa. (Alex Leary  |  Times)