Posts Tagged ‘southwest ranches’

Battle rages in Florida over private detention center

Posted on: February 29th, 2012 by Nicolas Mendoza 5 Comments

Protesters demonstrating against the Corrections Corporation of America/Southwest Ranches proposal (Pic by Marcos Restrepo)

Residents opposed to a federally-funded, privately-managed immigration detention center in South Florida issued a statement Wednesday calling on President Obama to step in and halt the project.

A press release issued by No Prison in Southwest Ranches states: “Will the President step in and protect the people in this area from a project that has been kept silent by Corrections Corporation of America, LLC through invite only ‘advisory meetings’ policy of a ‘cone of silence’ by the Town of Southwest Ranches identified through public records requests and implemented by request of [Department of Homeland Security/Immigration and Customs Enforcement] and [Corrections Corporation of America]?”

Bill Di Scipio, a resident of Southwest Ranches and an opponent of the detention center, tells The Florida Independent that he and other residents have created a political action committee, Residents Against Inappropriate Development Inc., that “provides us with the legal means to raise money to defeat the hundreds of thousands of dollars that [Corrections Corporation of America] is now spending to make sure this happens.”

He adds that Corrections Corporation of America (also known as CCA) has recently sent out four different mailers and made two robocalls to residents’ homes.

DiScipio tells the Independent that, come time for the August and November 2012 elections, “we will end up supporting candidates in Southwest Ranches and perhaps on our congressional and senatorial level as well,” adding that the primary goal is to defeat the detention center.

The Florida Independent has reported extensively on the opposition to the immigration detention center set to be built in South Florida since Immigration and Customs Enforcement first announced it had chosen the Southwest Ranches/Corrections Corporation of America proposal in June 2011.

The land where the detention center is set to be built is owned by the Corrections Corporation of America, but surrounded by unincorporated Broward county land and the city of Pembroke Pines.

Pembroke Pines officials sent a letter to President Obama earlier this month asking him to intervene, along with a copy of a resolution opposing the detention center.

A CCA detention center facts website details the benefits that residents of Southwest Ranches and Pembroke Pines would receive from the project  - including tax revenue and jobs. According to the site, “Independent studies have shown no correlation between property values and proximity to a detention or corrections facility.”

But Di Scipio says that claim is a lie, citing an FIU/FAU study which “shows a direct correlation of a drop in housing values in the Goodyear, Arizona community situated next to a prison.”

The Florida Carpenters Regional Council recently told the Independent that it is working with CCA to secure the proposed detention center. According to Regional Council spokesman Miguel Fuentes, the project would create hundreds of jobs for local workers. Fuentes told us that he has participated in the robocalls.

The Broward Group of the Sierra Club expressed its opposition to the detention center earlier this month, arguing that it would impact the environment and further degrade what remains of Broward County’s natural areas.

Supporters of the proposal to build the detention center in Southwest Ranches include Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, D-Fl., and Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fl.

Local Sierra Club opposes South Florida immigration detention center

Posted on: February 13th, 2012 by The American Independent 1 Comment

Protesters demonstrate against the Corrections Corporation of America/Southwest Ranches proposal (FLORIDA INDEPENDENT/Marcos Restrepo).

The Broward Group of the Sierra Club last week announced its opposition to the federal immigration detention center set to be built in the South Florida town of Southwest Ranches.

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More Occupy protesters arrested in Florida

Posted on: January 25th, 2012 by The American Independent No Comments

An Occupy Fort Lauderdale poster advertising the anti-GAIM protest (source: Facebook)

Three protesters who took part in a national day of action to call on participants of the 2012 Global Alternative Investments Management (GAIM) conference to divest from private prisons were arrested Tuesday. (more…)

Occupiers arrested in Florida; protests continue against investor conference (UPDATE)

Posted on: January 24th, 2012 by The American Independent 2 Comments

An Occupy Miami poster (source: Facebook)

Updated 5:15 p.m., with video footage of the arrests.

Three protesters from the Occupy movements of Palm Beach and Miami were arrested Monday evening after they blocked the Camino Real bridge in Boca Raton to protest the 2012 GAIM conference, a major investor industry event. (more…)

Payroll tax bill includes funds for more immigration detention beds

Posted on: December 20th, 2011 by The American Independent No Comments
The congressional showdown over payroll tax cuts and unemployment benefits continues after the GOP-led House voted Tuesday against a Senate bill approved over the weekend.

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‘Nobody’ in Pembroke Pines wants proposed immigration detention center, commissioner says

Posted on: December 15th, 2011 by The American Independent No Comments

Protesters demonstrate against the proposed ICE facility (Photo: FLORIDA INDEPENDENT/Marcos Restrepo).

Pembroke Pines Commissioner Angelo Castillo tells The Florida Independent that as an immigrant and an advocate for comprehensive immigration reform he abhors the proposed immigration detention center to be built on a lot surrounded by his city.

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GOP Senate candidate says he opposes South Florida immigration detention center

Posted on: December 8th, 2011 by The American Independent No Comments

GOP Senate candidate George LeMieux, left (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Aviation Structural Mechanic 3rd Class Nicole Bieneman)

GOP Senate candidate George LeMieux issued a statement today opposing a publicly funded, privately managed immigration detention center to built in South Florida.

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Florida state rep. reiterates support for South Florida immigration detention center

Posted on: December 2nd, 2011 by The American Independent No Comments

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Pembroke Pines (Photo: Facebook)

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Pembroke Pines, said today that a proposed publicly funded, privately managed immigration detention center to be built in South Florida would have the least negative impact on residents and create short-term and long-term jobs.

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