No decision on jail design; jailers to look at space allocations

Discussions this morning pushed back any chance of the Jackson County Board of Supervisors making a decision right away on a design for the new county jail.

Supervisors heard this morning from the company the county hired to design a brick jail. But they are also considering a composite, prefabricated design that promoters say could save the county $5 million in construction costs. The board was told this morning that the amount of space per inmate will be key in meeting state and national jail standards.

Roger Pryor with Pryor & Morrow challenged the promoters of the new composite design to meet the 70 square foot per inmate space requirements and still offer a $5 million savings.

Supervisors decided not to choose today between the traditional brick design and the new composite and steel design. Instead, they will wait for input from the Sheriff's Department that runs the jail.

If they go with the composite design that is shaped like the spokes of a wheel, there may be a drastically reduced space for day room, which would effect the way jailers manage prisoners, officials said.