A quick look around the current Pearl River County Jail gives a clear picture of why a new jail facility is needed.
The 30-year-old jail was built to house 28 inmates, routinely holds between 100 and 110. Many inmates sleep on the floor in storage rooms others in trailers. Conditions are so bad, that several grand juries have condemned the building.,
"In the old facility the concrete has deteriorated so bad it was easy for the inmates to chisel through," Pearl River County Sheriff Joe Stuart said.
The new jail complex will be 48,000 square feet and have room for 386 beds. Sheriff Stuart says that will end overcrowding and solve a few other problems as well.
"Right now were housed in four different locations, our emergency communications office is in one location, the jail and jail records are in another, our investigations division is behind the courthouse. This new complex will put us all in one location."
County Administrator Adrian Lumpkin, says the new jail complex is centrally located in the County and will make it easy for law enforcers coming from the North or South ends of the County.
The new jail will be located on about 25 acres of a 100 acres the County will purchase next week. The rest of the land will serves as a buffer zone and preserved for future jail expansion.
Officials plan to house state and federal inmates to help off set operating costs. Lumpkin told WLOX news, "We are working with the architect to make sure the facility is build with the State and Federal guidelines required."
Construction on the project is expected to begin within two months It should take about two years to build.
District 3 County Supervisor Larry Davis told us the good news is the jail won't be built with taxpayer dollars. He said a development company called Mississippi Correctional Limited will build the facility and then lease it to the County.
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