November 9, 2005
Voters have said yes, but are the plans in place? And if so, what are they? News 12 is on your side with how your tax dollars will create new jail space in South Augusta.
From paper to actual property, a yes vote means more brick and barbed wire are on the way.
“It’s a massive puzzle undertaking basically where you’ve gotta put all these pieces together to see how they float out,” said Fred Russell, City Administrator.
Just twenty-four hours after voters approve SPLOST and city officials are already rolling up their sleeves. Among the projects, new jail pods on Phinizy Road. They’ll replace these old towers at an overcrowded and leaky LEC.
“Well, it’s necessary,” said Jack Nattinger, neighbor.
Jack Nattinger lives just down the road and agrees they’ve got to go some place.
“As far as I know, we’ve had no problems around here since they built them and since they’ve been in operation,” Nattinger said.
But not all of Jack’s neighbors are on the same page.
“They said they’d never build the main headquarters out here on Phinizy Road which would always stay at Walton Way. And now all of a sudden it’s gonna become the main command center for the whole Richmond County,” said Tony Adkins, neighbor.
But with 52 acres and the resources already there, Russell insists there was no second choice. Expanding the Webster Detention Facility was simply the most cost-efficient.
“We’ve got plenty of land, we’ve got security there and those kinds of things. And unfortunately it’s one of those things you’ve got to put somewhere,” Russell said.
Leaving some hoping fences really do make good neighbors.
The budget for this project is $36 million. Groundbreaking is expected to take place in May of 2007.