Lee County jail adding beds - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lee County jail adding beds

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June 7, 2006

Leesburg -- Along with the record population growth in Lee County, comes crime and the need for more jail space. When their county's jail is full, the Sheriff has to take the inmates to another county's jail, and pay them to house them.  

 Earlier this year that was costing Lee County about $20,000 a month. Now work is underway so they can house more at their own facility.

This former recreation room at the Lee County jail is getting a face lift, and in about a month will help with overcrowding. Chief Dennis Parker of the Lee County Sheriff's Office said, "This will be a temporary relief from having to spend that money to house inmates in some other county."

 The Lee County jail has 74 beds total now. This construction will add room for 14 more beds, which means a significant saving for the county. Chief Parker said, "Normally when you house an inmate out of county it costs about $45 a day."

The construction is costing only about $50,000, because state prison inmates are doing a great deal of the work. Chief Parker said, "Which will save up about one hundred thousand dollars doing it this way."

Bunk beds will be installed in twelve of the individual cells, so the jail will have 26 new beds. A short term solution to their growing jail population issues.

Lee County has the plans to add another wing onto their jail, but not the money to pay for it yet.

 Lee County Sheriff's officials expect the construction work to be finished by July, potentially saving over $1,100 a day if they had to house inmates in other counties.

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