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Jackson County commission OKs leasing detention center
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JEFFERSON — A building that closed last year may get a new lease on life as the Jackson County Board of Commissioners enters into discussions with the Georgia Department of Corrections for its use.

The department of corrections closed the I.W. Davis Detention Center in October 2008 as part of its plan to consolidate operations.

Since then, Jackson officials have "considered obtaining the building to expand the number of inmates that could be housed at the Jackson County Correctional Institution," according to agenda documents from the county commission meeting Monday.

"As many of you know, we’ve been working with the department of corrections for close to a year now for acquiring the I.W. Davis facility," County Manager Darrell Hampton told the commissioners at Monday’s meeting.

The lease agreement would allow the county to lease the facility for 20 years with 10 one-year extensions for a total of 30 years, which would cost the county about $33,400 in annual lease payments plus any operating costs incurred in its use.

Jackson County would also be responsible for routine maintenance and repairs, and reimburse the department of corrections for property insurance premiums and deductibles, according to the terms of the lease.

The building would house 26 inmates which, along with the new jail’s 174-person capacity, would bring the total inmates housed in the county to 200.

This would add more people to the inmate labor programs within the county and reduce overall operational costs, Hampton said.

Annual revenues from housing 174 inmates total $1.27 million and the added inmates will increase the sum by $189,800 to $1.46 million annually, according to supplemental agenda documents.

The lease agreement was approved unanimously, with Commissioner Tom Crow not in attendance and Commissioners Chas Hardy, Bruce Yates and Dwain Smith voting in favor.

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