Government plans to withdraw approval for Letcher County federal prison

Published: Jun. 12, 2019 at 3:29 PM EDT
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The federal government is planning to withdraw its approval for the Letcher County prison project.

The Bureau of Prison's plans to rescind the Record of Decision are expected to be announced on Monday.

The Bureau of Prisons' Office of Public Affairs gave the following statement to WYMT:

The prison project, which was going to be built on former coal mine property, was supposed to create 300 new jobs.

Congressman Hal Rogers told WYMT this is a frustrating delay, but might not be the end for the project:

Some people in the area hoped the prison would provide an economic boost for their businesses.

"The impact of bearing that the prison may not come to Letcher County is a little bit devastating because I planned on doing that because I wanted to expand my opportunities to bid, not only for milk but anything else that the prisoners needed," said Gwendolyn Christon, Isom IGA store manager

Christon hoped to sell milk and other goods to the prison.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave his own statement about the decision:

“Chairman Rogers and I have made great progress in directing much-needed federal resources to this community. Together, we will continue to work to ensure the Letcher County prison project moves forward.”

Rogers' office said it found nothing to suggest that the Record of Decision cannot be reissued or replaced once the BOP rescinds it.