The Buena Vista County Board of Supervisors took a tour of the new jail and sheriff's office recently, as the county prepares to open the facility next month. The Supervisors have been inspecting progress regularly.
"It certainly has come a long way," Chairman Herb Crampton said.
According the project manager, John Hansen of Midwest Construction Consultants, the jail is expected to be completed and turned over to the county on September 1.
"We will be going through the site (today) and will be creating a punch list, a list of things that need to be completed with all the contractors," Hansen said.
One of the components to start soon is the installation of the control system for the doors. The new digital system will give the jailers control of the doors and systems overall and in specific areas.
"The system is at the current state of the art in technology for jails," Hansen said. "It was common to have a membrane system that would have buttons to push, but was costly to update. The membrane would cost about $2,000 to update where the new system would just be a simple reprogramming of the software."
Work still continues on the both the jail and administrative ends of the building. The Communication/E911 Center is one of the offices to benefit from the move. According to Hansen, their space has almost doubled compared to what they have currently in the basement of the Courthouse.
"They could have up to four consoles in here and still have room," Hansen told the supervisors as they entered what will become the communication center.
A meeting room will be available with hookups for internet, phones and other communications, which will allow for some proceedings via two-way technology in the future.
Supervisor Dale Arends believes the room will be used heavily by law enforcement.
"If need be the FBI or some other agency can use the space and be close to communications or maybe press conferences could be held there as well as regular meetings," Arends said.
Hansen said the jail is still on schedule and on budget with just $10,000 left in the contingency plan. The project was delayed two weeks due to weather. Hansen plans on having the jail completed by September 1 to allow the sheriff to move in and get people training.
As previously reported, the grand opening of the jail is expected for September 8 and 9 Before the grand opening, Eddy hopes to have time to complete training his deputies on the new facilities as well as to have other law enforcement agencies come and be trained on proper procedures of the jail. Inmates would be moved in Sept. 10.