SPRINGFIELD | The Illinois Senate wants to block a detention center for illegal immigrants that has been proposed for Crete.
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency wants a new holding facility with room for more than 700 people.
The state Senate voted 34-17 on Wednesday to prohibit all privately run detention centers in Illinois. The measure now goes to the House.
Crete Village Administrator Tom Durkin said he has a lot of questions about the vote.
"It is difficult for the village to provide an official comment at this time," Durkin said. "We are not really sure of what it means. Does it mean the state government can override the federal government? Does it mean future agreements, or does it mean all agreements regardless of their status? We will have to wait and see how it all plays out. This is why the village did not take a stance on the subject — there are so many unknowns."
The proposed Crete facility would take in detainees from Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana and Kentucky prior to their being returned to their country of origin. The facility also would provide a venue for conducting hearings for those contesting deportation.
Corrections Corporation of America is the private business that would build, own and manage the facility. Village President Michael Einhorn said that CCA has informed the village that all liability issues regarding the facility belong to CCA, and that the village would not be held liable for any issues.
Some Crete residents oppose the idea of a detention center in their community.
Crete resident Marimonica Murray, a member of the Concerned Citizens of Crete, said she testified at the state Capitol on Wednesday in an executive session as a proponent of SB 1064.
"We are so pleased this bill has progressed quickly," she said. "Many other organizations were there in support of this bill. We are extremely grateful to everyone who helped to make this happen."
Immigration activists also have raised concerns.
Latino immigration activists from Chicago's Little Village neighborhood have planned a three-day march to Crete in opposition to the detention facility, ending Sunday morning at the proposed detention center site northeast of the Balmoral Park racetrack.
The Associated Press and Times correspondent Bob Moulesong contributed to this report.