LITTLEFIELD, Texas — The City of Littlefield voted to dis-annex 30 acres of land belonging to the Texas Civil Commitment Center, which houses hundreds of sex offenders.
The city council voted to remove the land on Tuesday night at 6 p.m.
Mayor Eric Turpen said the city wanted to dis-annex the land for demographic and economic reasons.
“Economic developers, as they put packages together for prospectitve businesses–when they put those that demographuc information in there, crime rates and things like that– it [doesn’t] paint a good picture like we have here,” Turpen said.
The facility provides mental health treatment for sexual predators for an extensive period of time, according to the Texas Commitment Center Office’s website. According to TCCO, as of 2018, there 306 sex offenders living in the facility.
“As we recruit new businesses and stuff we don’t want anybody to get a false sense of our demographics,” Turpen said. “That facility’s currently being used as an inpiatient sex offender treatment program and therefore that skews our number for our demographics.”
Turpen said with the 2020 census nearing, he said the dis-annexation was important for the city.
“We wanna paint a factual picture for what really is the demographic of our normal community,” Turpen said.
Residents in Littlefield, and people working at the center will not be affected by the dis-annexation. The city will also still own the land while they lease it to the Texas Government.
“We receive revenue off of that,” Turpen said. Turpen mentioned the revenue is put toward the city’s debt.
Turpen said the ordinance is effective immediately.
KLBK spoke to residents in Littlefield, however, did not agree to an on-camera interview. Most said it is a good thing for the city.