A satellite camp at the Thomson Correctional Center will receive 80 minimum security prisoners in July, according to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.
The inmates going to the satellite camp will have job duties while the federal government works toward full activation of the Thomson Correctional Center, located in Northwest Illinois.
The former Illinois prison was purchased by the federal government in 2012. The 146-acre, 1,600-bed prison on the north edge of Thomson in Carroll County cost the state of Illinois $129 million to construct in 2001, but budget issues prevented it from fully opening. The U.S. government agreed to purchase Thomson from the state for $165 million in 2012 for use as a maximum-security federal prison to alleviate overcrowding in the federal prison system.
In the coming months, additional inmates are expected to be brought to the facility, according to U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin's (D-IL) office. Some 160 federal employees already work at the site, and recruitment for additional staff is underway. The prison will have about 1,100 employees once the facility is fully activated.