New handicap ramp also on list of projects to explore
Within the month a new committee will begin studying options for additional jail space in Buena Vista County. The board of supervisors agreed yesterday to form a jail expansion study committee.
The need for a jail expansion comes after months of increased incarceration costs due to a lack of space in the existing jail. The county has to pay surrounding counties money to house inmates it ships out. Also, when full the Buena Vista jail has to ship out INS immigration hold prisoners, which could be bringing in $70 a day from the federal government.
The jail topped the list of necessary projects during a planning discussion Tuesday morning. The other top projects for the county are additional parking and a new handicap-accessible ramp.
As far as the jail is concerned, the most likely option would be some sort of expansion to the north of the current courthouse, though nothing as elaborate as what was proposed in a defeated bond issue three years ago.
"We're not looking at a $6 million project. We're looking at something being built at the courthouse," said Supervisor Jim Gustafson.
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