The ever-elusive jail issue again evaded the grasp of the Buena Vista County Board of Supervisors Tuesday when the Board decided that a May 30 deadline with the Storm Lake Planning and Zoning Commission could not be met.
One problem is the county's ability to provide specifications for the proposed jail with a two-week advance notice before Storm Lake Planning and Zoning meets May 30 or a week before the city Board of Adjustment meets June 1, according to Supervisor Bill Lanphere. Lanphere said factors such as the proposed jail's height, shape, exits, and parking must be known before the county submits its request for a special exception. "And we don't know any of those answers," Lanphere said.
Building a correctional facility in any zoning classification, with the exception of a central business district, requires a special exception. There were 50 people from the Rose Lane and Tulip Lane area a few weeks ago who signed a petition against the Board's intended plans to build a jail on about 1.66 acres Buena Vista County owns north of the county's East Richland Annex.
Other jail sites have not fared so well for the county either, including a site on West Milwaukee that received a thumbs down from the city and later a spec building owned by Storm Lake Area Development Corporation. Opposition by Buena Vista County Farm Bureau to both the spec building itself and a projected price tag for remodeling the building to the tune of $5.1 million led the Board to drop plans to use the spec building for a jail.
Read the rest in the May 12 Pilot Tribune