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Union Calls for Hearings on State Prison Closings

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File photo of prison. (credit: KARIM SAHIB/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of prison. (credit: KARIM SAHIB/AFP/Getty Images)

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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — The head of the union representing Florida’s corrections officers is calling on state lawmakers to hold community hearings on Gov. Rick Scott’s plan to close seven prisons and four work camps.

Ken Wood says the planned closures will put prison workers out of jobs and also hurt local vendors who do business with the prison in their county. Wood is acting president of Teamsters Local 2011.

Corrections Secretary Kenneth S. Tucker says he would try to transfer as many workers as possible to other facilities. He also will ask other state agencies and county sheriffs to hire the displaced. About 1,300 jobs are affected by the closings.

The closings could save the state at least $75 million. Wood complained that none of Florida’s private prisons were slated for closure.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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