New Smith County Jail Parameters Set - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

7/2/2007-Tyler

New Smith County Jail Parameters Set

The Sheriff's department has been asking for it for over twenty years.  Monday Smith County Commissioners took a huge step toward creating a new jail.

The Smith County Commissioner's Court has approved a sort of guideline for future jail plans. It includes a jail located in downtown Tyler at Spring and Elm Street.

Other specifics: the new plan must include between 1100 and 1360 beds and it must have an infirmary with 48 holding cells. They're also asking for multi-occupancy rooms on each floor. The new jail must carry Smith County through the year 2025.

"This is real forward movement on the jail project. I think the citizens of Smith County should be thrilled with what happened today. It will be one plan. It will be well illuminated to the people to the voters what that plan is so they will know what we are talking about and how much," said Pct. 2 Commissioner Bill McGinnis. 

"This has been one of the biggest steps that this court has ever made since 1976 when I was first elected. I can't recall a day that makes me more happier," said Smith County Sheriff J. B. Smith.

Preliminary numbers for the new jail: $134 million but the court believes that number can be lowered. The commissioners also decided that future plans will include the closing of the low risk facility.

Danielle Capper, Reporting. dcapper@kltv.com

 

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