Utah lawmakers eye budget surplus to fund new state prison

This Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013 photo shows the Utah State Prison in Draper, Utah. Utah lawmakers are advancing a plan to relocate the state prison in southwest Salt Lake County. The Utah State Prison occupies about 700 acres in Draper where tech companies such as eBay and Microsoft have opened offices. Gov. Gary Herbert has called on lawmakers to fund the relocation so the corridor can develop as a technology hub. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Utah Legislature voted unanimously to allocate $235 million to the construction of a new state prison in Salt Lake City.

Sen. Jerry Stevenson, R-Layton, says lawmakers had already authorized up to $285 million in bonding for the prison relocation project. But new state revenue numbers released Monday show more than $1.3 billion in new state revenue will be available for the next legislative session, thus, Stevenson says, allowing for a cash payment on construction in lieu of credit.

The bill directs $67 million for the project in 2019 and $168 million in 2020. The new prison is estimated to cost $700 million.

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