- Family Features
- Business Directory
- Gallery Of Homes
- Subscribe Now!
- Place A Classified Ad
- New! Digital e-Edition
Jail expansion clears hurdle
Oct 07, 2012 12:00 am
Wilson County interim Sheriff Robert Bryan successfully made his case to the county budget committee Thursday night concerning the need to buy a house on the corner of Lake Street and Rogers Avenue with an eye toward future expansion of the Wilson County Jail.
Capt. Gary Keith presented the committee with overhead photos of the house, which is behind the Goodyear Tire Store on High Street.
Bryan said budget committee approval is just the first step in the process.
"The full county commission will have to vote on it at the October meeting," he said.
Bryan said it was a classic case of "location, location, location," and the county needed to make the buy quickly, because it is inevitable that the jail would need to be expanded at some point.
He explained the county has already bought the Goodyear property, and the lot behind it that has a house on it that has already been sold and moved. The house in question is on the next lot back. Bryan said it's good the county commission is looking ahead.
"It really makes me feel good they're thinking about the future," Bryan said. "As the jail population grows, we've got the land and this is a big step.
Bryan noted to the budget committee that the $58,000 purchase price would come entirely from litigation fees from civil and criminal warrants. In fact, the state law mandates that criminal warrant fees can only be used to build and maintain courtrooms and/or correctional facilities or paying off the debt on either of those.
He got a laugh at the meeting when he added that the money would be coming from "the people who will be using this property," meaning people headed for the jail or people who are using the court system.
He also said that until such a time as the jail can be expanded, the land would be used for parking.
"On court dates people are lucky to find a parking space. They've been letting them park at the Goodyear store lately," Bryan said. "The land we want to purchase will probably be used for parking first, and later to expand the jail or the judicial center."
Bryan thinks it would be money well spent.
"It's a good move for the future, taking care of the taxpayers and being good stewards of their money," he said. "It'll cost more when we need it to expand the jail."
Staff writer Mary Hinds may be reached at 444-3952, ext. 45 or email@example.com.