Franklin County Commissioners reach an agreement on how to fund the proposed jail expansion.
At their work session Tuesday evening, the board heard from county manager John Phillips.
Noting that there was about $800,000 dollars already set aside for a jail expansion from a previous SPLOST, Phillips recommended a multi-phase approach.
Phillips also recommended putting the jail expansion project on the next SPLOST referendum to secure funding to actually build the jail extension.
“ Hopefully will be successful in getting that SPLOST passed, think it would be conceivable that we could have the site prepared, that we could have plans ready, really everything ready to put out to get a contractor started very quickly upon approval of the SPLOST, says Phillips.”
Commission chair Thomas Bridges said he believed the plan was viable and recommended the board approve the plan at their regular meeting next week.
“ I think it’s unfortunate that we didn’t have a piece of the SPLOST in the present SPLOST, therefore it put us in the mud, so to speak. But it’s never to late to start the cycle that Mr. Phillips is talking about, then I ask the citizens if they want to move forward with expanding the jail, I think it’s a good approach.”
This is the third funding proposal in as many months and Franklin County Sheriff Stevie Thomas said he’s ready to move forward as soon as possible.
“Construction cost it has definitely been going up, I know Stephens County, I was told their whole complex 7 million dollars if they waited 2 to 3 years to finish it, it would cost 11 million dollars so in saying that I understand to know where you’re at. We definitely need to keep digging we cant back up, we cant forget about it because there are other things that could happen, says Thomas.”
No vote was taken at the work session Tuesday, but the board plans to bring the matter up for a vote at their regular meeting next week.