Profiting off Prisoners

Today’s New York Times has a story about  how one company, an affiliate of Community Education Centers, Inc. (CEC) whose executives have close political ties to Gov. Chris Christie and Essex County executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr., was the sole bidder on a contract to run a 450-bed immigration detention center in Essex County likely to be worth $8 million to $10 million annually.

As it happens CEC, which runs a rehabilitation center called Delaney Hall, has a history in Union County and yesterday they were also granted a contract there worth up $2.5 million.  Here is the story in timeline and video form:

The Timeline
2001/2002: John J. Clancy, CEO/Chairman of CEC gives over $60,000 to Democratic PACs and continues to be a substantial donor.

2003: Incoming Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo, Jr. as an initiative suggests complete reimbursement from the state for Delaney Hall, an innovative drug treatment and rehabilitation program for inmates in the county correctional system.

2000-present: William Palatucci. Vice President of CEC and a close Christie ally works the other side of the political street even being one of the Union County Republican Committee’s rare contributors (outside of candidates and their friends and family).

2008:  CEC was seriously penalized after an immigrant escaped and officials responded by removing the remaining 120 detainees from the company’s supervision and placing them in a public jail.

January, 2009: The mother of a Utah teenager who died after a month in a wilderness boot camp is suing the West Caldwell-based CEC alleging that the staff at their facility in Colorado ignored signs of what turned out to be a staph infection.

May, 2009: Inmate at Delaney Hall dies in a fight

The Video

The Lesson: Donate…..get contracts…..have a “checkered record” in immigrant detention…..keep donating…..keep getting contracts.

3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mr. Surprise!!!! on July 31, 2011 at 5:21 am

    Perhaps off topic but this in from The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations:

    The Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility played a large roll in the collapse of Central Falls RI finances, Central Falls having its mayor replaced by a receiver, and it seems bankruptcy.

    Flanders puts Wyatt jail under scrutiny


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