Department of Justice

Texans Pay Millions on Facility Being Leased for $1 a Month

A vacant youth lockup in Southeast Texas is being leased to a private charter school company for $1 per month even as state taxpayers continue to pay off the nearly $16 million in bonds issued to build it two decades ago.

In fact, a legislative report last year revealed that almost half of the nearly $100 million the Texas Juvenile Justice Department owes on bond debt was for lockups the agency no longer operates.

The Houston Chronicle reported that despite the millions owed on the 50-acre youth facility in Beaumont, the General Land Office has valued it at just $2.6 million.

It opened in 1996 at a reported cost of $23 million and was closed in 2011 because of the declining number of teenage lawbreakers placed in state custody.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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