Storm damage at Dixon Prison forces transportation of inmates to Pontiac

By Joe Bennett

July 1, 2012 Updated Jul 1, 2012 at 10:17 PM CDT

DIXON, Ill -- Storm damage to the Dixon Correctional Center Friday leads to more overcrowding in the Illinois prison system, according to the Associated Press.

The unforeseeable act of nature may cause complications in Governor Quinn's original plan once seven state prisons are closed.

High winds from Friday's storm damaged the roofs of some buildings at the Dixon Correctional Center.

They also knocked down entire trees, blocking the entrance to part of the prison.

The AP is reporting the Department of Corrections has since transported 78 mentally-ill inmates to the Pontiac Prison.

That's one of two prisons set to receive a portion of roughly 300 inmates from the Tamms correctional center by the end of August.

This comes one day after Quinn signed the budget into law, making the prison closures official.

Critics of the plan argued last week that too many prisons in Illinois are overcrowded as it is.

"I think it behooves all of us in Springfield to sit down and talk about a plan that really works, because just trying to stuff more people into facilities that are already inadequate is not the solution," State Senator Dave Koehler from the 46th District said last week.

The Illinois Department of Corrections has reportedly announced the damage in Dixon will not change plans for the facility closures.

There is no word yet on when repairs on the Dixon facility are expected to be complete.