New ICE facility for Utah immigrants could be in Wyoming

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A new detention facility for immigrants behind bars in Utah could be built in Wyoming, a plan that is triggering backlash from immigration attorneys who say the long drive would make it difficult to visit clients.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will begin requesting proposals later this month for a 250-500 bed facility that it prefers be within 90 miles (145 kilometers) of the Salt Lake City area, according to a notice posted last week.

That radius would include Evanston, Wyoming, where Utah-based Management and Training Corporation plans to submit a proposal for a facility, company spokeswoman Issa Arnita said. She said the company plans to partner with Uinta County officials in Wyoming on the proposal, The Salt Lake Tribune reported Wednesday.

Evanston is a city of about 20,000 people right across the Utah-Wyoming line, about 85 miles (137 kilometers) northeast of Salt Lake City.

Immigration attorneys in Utah say they are worried that building the facility in Wyoming would make it more difficult for families and lawyers to visit people who are detained.

The radius for the facility is smaller than when ICE first began discussions two years ago and said it would consider proposals within 180 miles (290 kilometers) of Salt Lake City. The agency said it is refining its strategy.

There is no firm timeline to choose a company and location, and a decision would be made sometime after a “thorough review” of the proposals, ICE spokeswoman Alethea Smock said.

ICE began moving people last year to places like Nevada and Colorado after Utah County ended its contract to hold immigration detainees in its jail.

A group of people protested the company’s role in immigration detention last year by chaining themselves the company’s headquarters in Centerville, Utah. Eight people were arrested.

The company said at the time that it is only a contractor for ICE and doesn’t play a role in policies.

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1 Comment

  • Warren s Pugh July 6, 2019 at 3:46 pm Reply

    Inconvenient to visit clients? How are these attorneys paid? By whom?
    Ingratitude excels. Why can the U.S. not do as countries in the Visegrad
    Alliance? No illegals especially those who demand you change your religion
    and culture. The Japanese, Koreans and Chinese keep unwelcome
    immigrants out. What is wrong with children learning pride in their countries?
    Oh yes. Inconvenience. Talk about inconvenience. Each immigrant, legit or not,
    costs the U.S. $15,900 each.=$79,500/five years. Call SLC and ask what we are
    paying and how much the state department has reneged on its monetary responsibilities?

    Notice that there are Middle East countries that refuse to take in their own kind?
    The Bhutanese couple that came to Utah last month complained that newcomers to Bhutan violated their right to worship as Hindus and Buddhists. Who do you think that was?

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