TALLAHASSEE (CBS4)- A proposal for privatizing prisons in 18 counties in the state, a bill that with a few differences, was released late Friday by The House Justice Appropriations Committee.

The committee is likely to discuss the bill at its Tuesday meeting. The House measure, unlike the bill in the Senate, which is scheduled for a hearing Monday in the Senate Rules Committee, would exempt the South Florida Reception Center in Miami-Dade County from the requirement, The News Service of Florida reported.

The House Bill would require the Department of Management Services to solicit bids from private companies to run the prisons, but makes the contract subject to Legislative Budget Commission approval.

The House proposal, which follows a long workshop on the issue by House members on Thursday, also says that “each current employee of the Department of Corrections at the designated correctional facility and assigned correctional unit who is affected by the privatization must be given first preference for continued employment by the contractor selected as a result of a competitive solicitation.”

(The News Service of Florida contributed material for this report.)


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