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Essex County Officials Approve Immigration Detention Center

Immigrants
Flickr User Elvert Barnes

New Jersey’s largest city will become home to one of the newest immigrant detention centers in the nation.

Essex County freeholds voted unanimously Wednesday night to award a contract for a facility in Newark to a politically-connected firm with close ties to Gov. Chris Christie.

The Star-Ledger of Newark reports Education and Health Centers of America Inc. was the sole bidder. It had won a previous bid that was scrapped.

Plans call for expanding by more than 1,000 the number of immigrant detainees held at the Essex County Correctional Facility in Newark and in its nearby privately run facility.

Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo Jr. has said the expanded detention facility will bring needed revenue to the county.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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