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Long-vacant Hardin jail could house inmates by May

February 26, 2019

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A privately-built jail on the edge of Montana’s Crow Reservation has signed a deal with the Bureau of Indian Affairs to once again house inmates.

BIA spokeswoman Nedra Darling tells The Billings Gazette the 464-bed jail could begin holding inmates by May. She declined to release a copy of the lease agreement, citing security concerns, but said the contract calls for the government to initially lease more than 64,000 square feet (5,945 square meters) of the Hardin facility for one year for about $800,000.

The Two Rivers Detention Facility, which has remained mostly vacant since it was built in 2007, was financed through $27 million in bonds.

Hardin officials said the facility was built with the expectation that it would house inmates from all over Montana. But state corrections officials said no agreement was ever made.

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Information from: The Billings Gazette, http://www.billingsgazette.com

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