A pair of bills in Maine would reopen a shuttered prison in the Down East portion of the state.
Former Gov. Paul LePage, a Republican, emptied the minimum-security facility last year. The move attracted criticism from some who described it as an important source of employment in a rural part of the state.
A committee of the Maine Legislature heard testimony about efforts to bring back the prison on Wednesday. One bill would use a $10 million bond from 2016 to reopen a smaller version of the facility. The other would bring the facility back to its former capacity.
The legislature's Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee is scheduled to hold a work session about the proposals on April 3.