Janet Barber

Grove Sun

JAY The Delaware County Public Facilities Authority met with Rick Smith of Municipal Finance Services, a company based out of Edmond, OK, during a meeting held September 3rd to discuss financial options for resolving the issue of overcrowding in the present Delaware County jail.

Smith presented his financial evaluation for several options. Included in the list were three options for a new facility to be constructed in the Jay Industrial Park, one located on the northwest section of the present courthouse and the renovation of the basement, or old jail, in the courthouse.

The options presented to the authority included:

Option 1-3 include a 650 ft. x 350 ft. structure with 34,000 sq. ft. to be constructed at the Jay Industrial Park. All three options include room for eventual expansion to a maximum 450 beds.

A. Option 1 is a 228-bed facility coming in at a cost of $11,322,004. Per bed cost is $49,658.

B. Option 2 is a 210-bed facility at a cost of $10,915,029. Per bed cost will be $51,976.

C. Option 3 is a 174-bed facility with a price tag of $10,515,029 or $60,431 per bed.

Option 4 would be a 184-bed facility to be constructed on the northwest side of the existing courthouse at a cost of $10,079,619 or $54,781 per bed. Should this option be chosen, the only room for expansion will be the addition of a second story at an undetermined cost and the possibility of changing building codes. This option will require acquisition of right of way and relocation of streets and businesses and $1M will be added in costs.

Option 5 is the renovation of what is called the old jail, which is now being used as an evidence room. The cost of the renovation comes in at $1,319,497 or $36,653 per bed cost giving the jail a 32-36 bed expansion.

Smith was quick to point out that this option would be a quick fix and permanent arrangements would have to made for further expansion in the near future.

Smith told the group that due to decreasing sales tax revenues collected in the county, the financial obligation would be a 25-year note compared to the 20-year projected obligation set last year.

During the meeting, Smith also discussed the operations and maintenance budgets for all the options, sales tax collection histories from 1998 until 2009, recently monthly sales tax collections, sales tax comparisons to surrounding towns and counties, jail funding options regarding payment obligations, ad valorem tax impact analysis and possible sales tax effective dates for election.

Members of the authority voted to take no action and to seek more public input.

They will meet again on Sept. 10 at 2 p.m. in the Commissioners office of the Delaware County Courthouse.