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Montgomery County to sell Mental Health Facility to GEO Group

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Mongtomery County has decided to sell the Montgomery County Mental Health Treatment Facility to Florida-based GEO Group, according to county Judge Alan B. Sadler ("County to Sell Mental Health Facility to GEO," 11/9/13). 

According to the article, county commissioners first put the 100-bed facility on the market in June. The minimum bid for the facility was $35.8 million. Though the GEO Group bid only $35 million at that time, discussions between the two entities continued, despite the county's rejection of GEO's bid in July of this year. 

Assistant County Attorney B.D. Griffin  predicts that he will present a final arrangement between Montgomery County and GEO at the upcoming Commisioners Court on November 18. According to Griffin, "There were a lot of revisions. It took some time."

The mental health facility, was first opened in 2010. Though it cost $33.8 million to build, it was appraised at $22 million.

GEO Group, according to the article, purchased the Joe Corley Detention Center in May, which cost GEO $65 million and generated $22 million in revenue for the county. The mental health facility, however, will not generate revenue; the facility's sale will initially cost the county $2 million to $4 million. Sadler claims that the agreement guarantees that the hospital's total debt will be paid in full, including any voiding of bonds. 

"It allows us to pay off the certificates of obligation used during construction," Griffin claimed. 

The GEO Group's interest in the mental health facility is connected to the company's health care division, GEO Care, which provides mental health treatment and management services for civil, forensic and special-needs psychiatric patient populations. 

 The  medium-security jail is actually right next door to the mental health facility. Both are located on Hilbig Road in Conroe. GEO has also announced that it seeks to build an additional facility on Hilbig Road, with a capacity between 1,000 and 1,500.