Eight firms involved in fourth N.H. bid for private prison

NH Hunt Justice Groups, the mysterious fourth bidder in the running to build, if not run, a private prison to house prisoners in New Hampshire, is a team of at least eight companies, most with experience in the corrections industry and one with ties to New Hampshire.Although the NH Hunt Justice Group bid was filed by officials from Hunt Companies, an El Paso, Texas-based construction firm specializing in military housing and a newcomer to the world of private prisons, the partners and members in the New Hampshire bid “have more than 200 years of corrections planning, design, construction, and facility management and operations experience,” according to Kristen Hunn, chief information officer of CGL Capital Solutions, a division of Carter Goble Lee Associates, one of the partner companies in the New Hampshire unit.”Our proven track record of planning and designing safe and secure facilities, financing, building and managing large public-private partnership projects and our in-house lifecycle management expertise will allow us to deliver a quality product and will allow for a long-term partnership to insure value to the New Hampshire Department of Corrections for the life of the contract and beyond,” said Dunn.Dunn added that “the benefit of a team approach in the case of New Hampshire is that the state can determine what is best for them. We are not lobbying for or against any possible scenarios, ranging from design only to design/build/finance/maintain/operate.”The firms involved in NH Hunt Justice Group are: • LaSalle Corrections, which currently “manages 12 facilities throughout the United States.” All of them are located in Texas and Louisiana.LaSalle, which says it has been in the private prison business since 1997, has a total inmate capacity of 8,100 and employs 1,100 people. That would make it a significantly smaller player than the big three national firms that the Hunt group is bidding against. (Corrections Corporation of America, a Tennessee firm, has 75,000 inmates at 66 facilities; the GEO Group of Florida has 80,000 beds at 114 facilities, and Management & Training Corp., based in Utah, has 19 management contracts covering 26,000 inmates. Carter Goble Lee Companies, a Columbia, S.C.-based firm, is involved in the planning, design and construction of criminal justice facilities for local governments. • RicciGreene Associates, with offices in New York, Kentucky and Massachusetts, designs prisons and other justice facilities, including the Brooklyn Detention Center in New York and the Lexington-Fayette County Adult Detention Facility in Kentucky. • STV Group, another engineering and architectural and planning firm based in Pennsylvania, designs prisons as well as other facilities, including the Bristol County Jail and House of Corrections in Massachusetts. • Moss and Skanska, which appears to refer to two contractors — Moss & Associates of Florida and Skanska USA. Hunn said that they have combined to build over 20,000 beds for the corrections market. However, a website search shows that their most well-known collaboration was work on the Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport. The Moss website points to eight prisons, all in Florida and Arizona. Skanska, a subsidiary of a Swedish firm, undertakes large scale contracts, but not any U.S. prisons. The international company, however, did recently land a prison contract in Scotland. • T.Y. Lin International Group, an engineering firm for large bridge and road projects, but no apparent prison experience. It has an office in Concord. • Buford Goff & Associates Inc., a mechanical, electrical and information technology firm based in South Carolina. It has been involved in four projects related to prisons.The state Department of Corrections and the Department of Administrative Services will evaluate the four bids over the next few months. They have promised to be mum on the details until a recommendation is made. Any recommendation still would have to be approved by the state Executive Council and possibly the Legislature. — BOB SANDERS/NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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