The city of New Richmond, Wisconsin, says it’s considering a request to build a detention center to be operated on behalf of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
The proposal has been made by Immigration Centers of America, a private company owned by several businessmen coincidentally based in Richmond, Virginia, per the Washington Post.
New Richmond announced it received a request from the company to rezone part of the northwest of the city, so it can build a detention center that could house detained immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally.
Judging by the ICE website, it would be only the second ICE detention center dedicated for holding immigrants in the U.S. illegally in the Upper Midwest. The other is in Kenosha, Illinois.
For detainments in Minnesota, ICE currently lists three county jails – in Sherburne, Carver and Freeborn counties – as its holding facilities.
In its press release, the City of New Richmond says that Immigration Centers of America “has established itself as one of the leading providers of civil immigration detention services in the nation.”
The city says it’s planning to be as transparent as possible throughout the planning process and is tentatively scheduling a public meeting for April 25 at 5 p.m.
It can expect a fair amount of pushback at the meeting, judging by some of the comments responding to the announcement, with ICE having proven particularly controversial for its involvement at the U.S.-Mexico border, where thousands of immigrant children have been separated from their parents under the current administration.