Wednesday, May 30, 2007

[JFP] Supes Play Musical Chairs

by Matt Saldaña
May 24, 2007

Mississippi Department of Corrections Commissioner Chris Epps met with Hinds County and Jackson officials on Thursday to discuss plans for a new 250-bed regional jail in the county. After the meeting, Epps led a congregation of politicians, including county supervisors and members of City Council, to potential sites for the jail, including the penal farm in Raymond, which will be closed due to substandard facilities.

Epps said the jail—which, so far has not secured any funding—would generate $29.74 a day per out-of-county inmate. He told the supervisors that even though the cost of construction would be $160 per square feet for 15,000 acres, or $7.2 million, the overall cost would total “$11 to $12 million,” due to “architectural fees.”

The supervisors have already approved $8.5 million—part of the county’s $30 million 2007 bond—for a new penal farm on the Raymond lot. No money from that bond will go toward a regional jail, though $13 million will likely go toward a parking garage designed by Supervisor Doug Anderson’s ex-son-in-law, William McElroy.

[View the entire article at the Jackson Free Press.]