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Officials hoping court case will result in reopening of Ojibway


MARENISCO TOWNSHIP, MI--   Marenisco Township officials hope a judge orders the state to reopen the Ojibway Correctional Facility. 

Township Supervisor Richard Bouvette says a lawsuit filed against the Michigan Department of Corrections states the MDOC was prejudiced and didn’t follow proper procedure when it decided to close Ojibway.

“Proper procedure would have been to do a study of the area to find out if it could withstand the prison closure and it’s pretty obvious that they did not do that,” he says.

Bouvette says the MDOC was supposed to close the prison October 1, but moved it to August 14. He says the department knew the township would send a delegation to Lansing to protest. Bouvette says since the suit was filed the MDOC has been dismissive.

“Well, basically what they told us in their response to the lawsuit was that we have no business even filing charges against them,” he says. 

Township attorneys allege the director of the MDOC has property near Newberry, the site of another—more expensive—prison.

Bouvette hope the state is forced to reopen Ojibway and give more than 200 people their jobs back.