May 22, 2011 11:37 AM by AP Posted by James H Egbert

Congressman pitches feds on Fort Lyon

DENVER (AP) - A Colorado congressman is pushing for the federal government to find a new purpose for a Bent County state prison due to be closed next year because of state budget cuts.

Republican Rep. Cory Gardner has written a letter to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs urging the VA to explore other uses for the Fort Lyon Correctional facility. The prison in Las Animas was a VA medical facility before it was turned over to the state 10
years ago.

The prison employs 200 but is closing March 1, with ownership returning to the federal government. Gardner's district includes Las Animas, and he told the VA it is "critical" to maintain those jobs.

The Pueblo Chieftain reports that Gov. John Hickenlooper has made a similar appeal.

Information from: The Pueblo Chieftain,

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



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