Fri., August 28, 2009 2:42pm (EDT)

Youth Campuses Hard Hit By Recession
By Josephine Bennett
Updated: 5 years ago

MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga  —  
For Milledgeville the bad news just keeps coming when it comes to job losses. Over the last year Baldwin County has been hit hard by plant closings and reductions in the state labor force. Several of the community's largest private employers are gone as well as two state prisons and a veteran's home. Nearly 25-hundred jobs have been lost.

Now the State Department of Juvenile Justice says it plans to close the Bill Ireland Youth Development Campus (YDC) in Milledgeville. The detention facility houses teenage boys. Nearly 300 jobs will be lost. Republican State Senator Johnny grant says the cumulative effect of state budget cuts is killing Milledgeville economically.

"Each individual agency, they make their cuts. It may be something that's tolerable on that individual agency level. But, when all those agencies seem to pick Milledgeville as part of their solution, it just makes it a very, very difficult thing for the Milledgeville community to absorb."

Grant has scheduled a meeting next week with Governor Sonny Perdue and local leaders to discuss the closure and come up with possible alternatives.