LEE COUNTY (WREX) — A new facility in Lee County is nearing its completion.
The new Lee County Jail is on pace to open in October, which is three months ahead of schedule. It’s a facility the officers say was not only wanted, but needed.
“There is just a plethera of different reasons why we need to change and this will take care of that,” says Jack Skrogstaed, Superintendent of the Lee County Jail.
The sheriff’s office says the new building provides advanced technology to keep both inmates and jail staff safe as the staff will be securely separated from inmates through locked screen doors and windows.
“To check on the inmates, there’s just bars that are separating the jail staff from the inmates and with the type of inmates that we have right now things can be thrown out at the jail staff,” said Skrogstaed.
The current jail was built in the 1970’s and does not meet the state standards, but that won’t be the case with the new jail.
“As you walk through you can see it a lot of the floors are just polished concrete. So that’s kinda a new thing these days too,” says Tim Dayle, the project manager. “But you know the cost of carpeting and finishes saved them thousands of dollars on that.”
The new jail will be a 41,000-square-foot facility which includes 96 beds. A big part of the design of the jail was rehabilitation, allowing family members to facetime inmates remotely from home.
“We dont want these folks to come back and and recycle through our system often and if they can have contact with their family members and that’s something that keeps them going throughout their stay here at our facility,” says John Simonton, a Lee County Sheriff.
The building also provides private rooms to conduct counselling and study sessions.
“With a facility like this where we can follow up with the inmate and try to get them into a treatment facility much quicker by having those contacts throughout the community.”
Authorities say the facility is on track to stay under the $18.5 million budget cap set by the Lee County Board.