Mesa considers hiring private prison company

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Mesa is considering a three-year contract with CoreCivic, which was formally known as Corrections Corporation of America. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Mesa is considering a three-year contract with CoreCivic, which was formally known as Corrections Corporation of America. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The ACLU filed a records request on Tuesday, seeking all communications between Mesa officials and lobbyists or representatives for CoreCivic. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The ACLU filed a records request on Tuesday, seeking all communications between Mesa officials and lobbyists or representatives for CoreCivic. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The ACLU says this would be the first deal between a local city and the prison company. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The ACLU says this would be the first deal between a local city and the prison company. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

The City of Mesa is taking up the controversial issue of hiring a private prison company to house pretrial inmates.

The council will consider a three-year contract, worth $4 to $5 million, with CoreCivic, which was formally known as Corrections Corporation of America.

[READ MORE: Corrections Corp. changing name to CoreCivic in rebrand push]

People arrested for misdemeanor or felony charges, who cannot afford to post bond, are currently housed in Maricopa County jails.

Mesa is considering hiring CoreCivic to transport the inmates to its facilities in Eloy or Florence.

"Many of them simply can't afford to post bond. Locking them up in a private prison where they could face serious harm will do more harm than good," said Alessandra Soler, of the ACLU.

The ACLU filed a records request on Tuesday, seeking all communications between Mesa officials and lobbyists or representatives for CoreCivic.

[RELATED: ACLU wants records of Mesa private prison contract talks]

"We want to get a better sense of the motivation for the city," Soler said.

The ACLU says this would be the first deal between a local city and the prison company.

"They're saying they're motivated by rising public safety costs, but there are huge implications here. This is a company with a notorious record of abuses and understaffing because they're trying to cut corners, to turn a profit," Soler said.

Mesa has the issue slated for discussion at a May 22 meeting.

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Jared DillinghamJared anchors the weekend newscasts at 5, 6, 9 and 10pm on both 3TV and CBS5. He also reports during the week for both stations.

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Jared Dillingham

Over his decade in Phoenix, Jared has worked all shifts at 3TV, including a yearlong stint anchoring the weekend morning show.

Since 2007, Jared has covered everything from Senator John McCain's campaign for president, to the Jodi Arias trial, to the largest wildfire in Arizona history.

Jared grew up in New York, and graduated from Syracuse University with degrees in broadcast journalism and political science.

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