September 10, 2022

It is an exciting day to mark the progress of Jackson County as the project to build a new detention center broke ground yesterday morning. As Vice Chairman of the Legislature, I am honored to represent the Legislature with a seat on the project’s Steering Committee. We took special care in rigorously evaluating critical factors for the success of the project which include: the ease of access and travel time to county courthouses, options to expand related social support services and regional access for local municipalities and residents.

My primary role as the Legislature’s representative has been to address the budgetary needs for the new facility while guiding the project to meet our mission statement: “Justice with Dignity”. This detention center will be more efficient to operate, while providing improved space for detainee services in a safe and secure environment for employees of the detention center, detainees, and all who visit the facility. By focusing on best practices to reduce recidivism in our community we will bring both an improved asset to our community and safer, more humane services to all that enter the facility. As the project moves into the construction phase, my focus will be to maintain our scheduled timeline and cost to deliver the highest value to Jackson County residents. The detention center is scheduled to open mid 2025.

It is my desire the facility provides services to address both mental health and education which in turn will lead to a reduction in the recidivism rate. I believe it is important this facility, being the Jackson County Detention Center, include support and services for all cities within Jackson County. The project is a commitment to build on into the future. This is our opportunity to get it right for the people of Jackson County.