Jail Expansion Sought

By: James Steiner
By: James Steiner

Sheriff Balaam says it's not that crime has gone up in the county.
It's more a result of the growing population...which has led to natural growth in crime.
The jail was built in 1988, and designed to hold at most 486 prisoners.
Over time, and three expansions later, it has a capacity of 11-hundred-25.
Detention officials say the facility met that capacity or more six times last year.
Fortunately, no inmates had to be released early.
Deputies identified 750 inmates that they could put in community work programs or house arrest.
But, the numbers are growing...especially the number of women.
The new housing should help with that issue.
Women have to be separated from men...along with the problem prisoners from the good ones.
Sheriff's officials say otherwise the jail would have more fights and riots.
250-more beds would go a long way towards the future.
The cost of the expansion is roughly 19 million dollars.
A property tax, approved by voters in oh-3, should cover the building and operating costs...about seven million dollars.
Bonds, approved by the county commission, will cover the rest.


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