SAN DIEGO (AP) — An Arizona-based construction company has applied for permits for a proposed $6 million expansion of San Diego’s Otay Mesa Detention Center, which houses immigrants awaiting court proceedings.
The Los Angeles Times reported Sunday that the permit application, filed earlier this month, proposes adding 512 beds to the center, which currently has 1,458.
Private prison company CoreCivic contracts with the federal government to operate the center, the only one in San Diego County housing immigrants.
CoreCivic spokeswoman Amanda Gilchrist says the expansion was planned when the center was built in 2015 and has nothing to do with President Donald Trump’s zero-tolerance policy of criminally prosecuting all who cross the border illegally.
Zero tolerance has increased detention center populations as people are taken into custody crossing the border.