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Dwight prison plan in limbo

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013 7:26 a.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD — A Livingston County proposal to house inmates in a portion of a now-closed state prison is in limbo after the sheriff said he's leaving his post.

Martin Meredith was leading the effort to take over a cell house at the Dwight Correctional Center in central Illinois. It was the only maximum-security lockup for women. Under his plan, the county would house up to 300 prisoners from the federal prison system, Cook County and elsewhere.

The facility was one of several that closed earlier this year as part of the state's cost-cutting moves.

Livingston County Board Chairman Marty Fannin tells the Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises Newspapers that Meredith's Oct. 1 departure could be the "kiss of death" for the project.

The proposal's on hold until there's a new sheriff.

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