The Arizona Department of Corrections has awarded a contract for 1,000 private prison beds to Corrections Corporation of America.
The Nashville, Tennessee-based company will use now-empty beds and increase the size of its Red Rock Correctional Center in Eloy, Arizona, to handle the new prisoners. CCA currently houses about 1,000 state prisoners at the facility.
Corrections Department spokesman Andrew Wilder said Wednesday that CCA will use more than 600 existing beds and build facilities for nearly 400 more to handle the new contract.
The state Legislature appropriated money for the beds last spring.
Arizona will pay CCA about $66 per day per prisoner and will own the facility after 17 years.
Wilder says the contract saves the state about $40 million it would cost to build a new prison.