Durbin, Bustos reassure commitment to opening Thomson prison

By WEEK Reporter

September 5, 2013 Updated Sep 6, 2013 at 12:43 AM CDT

Thomson, Ill. -- Illinois Congressional members, Sen. Dick Durbin and Rep. Cheri Bustos visited the village of Thomson Thursday.

Thomson is home to the brand new, never opened prison.

It was originally built by the state in 2001 and recently sold to the federal government.

Both Senator Durbin and Representative Bustos delivered a message to residents saying President Obama and Congress are committed to getting the prison up and running.

"I can say without any reservation that the Bureau of Prisons remains fully committed to opening Thomson and is doing all they can to prepare for that day."

The problem now may be money.

The House and Senate are not expected to agree on next year's budget by the October 1 deadline.

Any short-term stopgap budget might not include any money for opening Thomson prison.

Even if money is appropriated, a Bureau of Prisons official said it would take two years for the prison to be fully operational.

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