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Politics

LePage: Downeast Correctional Facility 'a Very Bad Place,' Should be Closed

Gov. Paul LePage says he's committed to closing the Downeast Correctional Facility in Machiasport. The governor told Bangor radio station WVOM on Tuesday that it costs more to house prisoners at the aging facility than it does at the maximum security prison in Warren.

"It's not fit to live in. I wouldn't eat out of that kitchen up there," the governor said. "Not that there's anything wrong, it's just a very bad place."

LePage's remarks are at odds with statements from some Republican lawmakers who indicated last week that the administration is easing off its plan to close the prison. The governor said Tuesday that he's moving as expeditiously as possible to shutter the facility.

Lawmakers from Washington County have opposed the governor's plan and last week introduced a resolution forcing the Department of Corrections to come up with a plan to keep the prison open for at least two more years.

The resolutions received early approval in the House and Senate, but faces additional votes.