Sweetheart deal for private prison site?

CCA has a contract to buy the private prison site from a private landowner. But who did that landowner get the site from? The Industrial Authority! And the sale prices involved are rather interesting: the landowner gets almost 100% profit in five years. One person I showed them to immediately said, “sweetheart deal.” What do you think?

The Valdosta-Lowndes County Industrial Authority (VLCIA) bought the site back in 1998 for $1,243,200, and sold it to the landowner in 2007 for 1,463,512, which is an increase of about 18% in almost 10 years or about 2% per year. CCA can buy it from the landowner in 2012 for $2,907,000, for an increase of 99% in about five years or almost 20% per year. Which is far more than the 20% in five years or about 4% per year shown by the assessed value. And this remarkable surge in the price of that land is during the worst real estate market since the Great Depression.

Does this look like a sweetheart deal to you?

DatePrice$ Increase% Increase% /yearFromTo
2012? $2,907,000 $1,443,488 99% 20% N.L. Bassford JrCCA
2012 $1,756,320 $   292,808 20%   4% Assessed Value
2007 $1,463,512 $   220,312 18%   2% VLCIAN.L. Bassford Jr
1998 $1,243,200 Camellia Investment Co. VLCIA
Prices in this table are taken directly from the legal documents.
All percentages are rounded and approximate.
Images of the deeds and plats are on the LAKE website.

Here is a petition for VLCIA to reject the private prison.


3 thoughts on “Sweetheart deal for private prison site?

  1. Pancho

    There have been many land deals made by CCA and its competitors around the country where a price far above the value of comparable land was paid. Cornell bought land in Hudson, Colorado, for perhaps five times what it was worth. CCA bought land in Pahrump, Nevada for a similar inflated price.
    What we should suspect in these cases is that the inflated price may be allowing bribes to be paid from the excess price. Hard to prove, without a whistleblower, but hope spring eternal.

  2. Barbara Stratton

    Is gently orienting the Land Bank Authority to Sunshine Law compliance going to be a joint LAKE transparancy in government venture or am I riding solo? Since their purpose is to acquire, transfer, divest, etc. land for the common good, real time exposure of this public good should be welcomed. I’m sure it is just an oversight that to date I have never seen a posted meeting date and the city web site has never listed anything but “occasionally” for a meeting schedule. Perhaps they think citizens would be bored and not interested in their meetings and we just need to let them know we are interested. Currently I’m interested in the construction for Dupont on St. Augustine.
    Also we need to keep watch to make sure SB 284, which would legislate the formation of a regional land bank with greatly enhanced acquisition powers, does not rise from the 2011 session ashes. If getting information from the local land bank authority is so difficult, can you imagine trying to keep up with a regional entity and all the creative land deal possibilities.

Comments are closed.