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Cuts would close Fox Valley corrections, food stamp facilities

Gov. PQuinn has changed his mind closing Fox Valley Adult TransitiCenter North Lake Street Aurora. The center is half-way house

Gov. Pat Quinn has changed his mind on closing the Fox Valley Adult Transition Center on North Lake Street in Aurora. The center is a half-way house for women just released from prison. | Sun-Times Media File

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Updated: May 9, 2012 10:17AM

The steep cuts proposed by Gov. Pat Quinn Wednesday would close two state facilities in the Fox Valley.

The Fox Valley Adult Transitional Center, 1329 N. Lake St., Aurora, would close its doors to 128 women recently released from prison. And the Department of Human Resources office in Yorkville would close, sending its clients to the Kane County office in Aurora for food stamps and other services.

The Fox Valley Adult Transitional Center assists women getting back into the community after being released from prison, providing education, counseling and workforce training. Women housed at the Fox Valley ATC work to gain full-time jobs and also participate in GED and college classes, volunteer, and receive counseling on life skills, anger management and avoiding substance abuse.

According to the governor’s office, men and women housed at adult transitional centers across the state would instead go home and be monitored electronically.

Six of the state’s seven adult transitional centers would close under Quinn’s proposal.

Closing the transitional centers would save the state about $17.7 million annually, according to the governor’s office. Closing the Fox Valley ATC would save about $2.6 million, and would result in 18 layoffs when the center closes in August.

According to the Illinois Department of Corrections, the Fox Valley ATC is the least expensive transitional facility per person in the state, with an average cost per inmate of $18,245. Tamms Correctional Center, a maximum security prison also on the chopping block, spends more than $64,000 per inmate yearly, and would save the state $26.2 million if closed.

Approximately 2,250 women have lived at the Fox Valley ATC since it became a women’s facility in August 2000.

Several Department of Human Resources offices, which administer food stamps, temporary assistance and WIC checks, would also be consolidated under Quinn’s proposal.

That would include the Kendall County DHS Office in Yorkville. The closure would save the state $60,623 a year, and would send 6,179 Kendall clients to the already crowded Kane County office in Aurora.

The 24 affected Human Services offices would close around the state on a staggered schedule throughout the fiscal year.

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