The ink is barely dry on a feasibility study performed on the Logan County Detention Center by JKS Architecture, a firm hired by the fiscal court to come up with options that could alleviate the overcrowding problem at the jail.

The purpose of the study is to compile data and resources of sufficient extent to allow county officials to make informed decisions regarding the future of the jail.

According to Keith Sharp, there are numerous scenarios that would alleviate the jail overcrowding condition, however, the study is limited to those which are achievable within the present facility and associated property.

"In order to facilitate the process, this report includes several scenarios ranging from doing nothing to considering several various additions and renovation. This report does not include a study for total jail replacement. The economics of the several scenarios is based on a combination of existing operation cost data, probable costs for construction and architect/engineer judgment," said Sharp in the study.

Each of the following scenarios comes with a different probable cost to construct.

The existing jail is approximately 20-years-old and has not received a major renovation. The jail has a licensed capacity of 162 beds (80 RCC beds and 82 full-service beds).

Other than choosing to do nothing and keep the jail operating the same way with a projected $1,612,430 cost annually to the county to run, there are five scenarios listed in the JKS Architecture feasibility study as follows:

Scenario One- Renovate the existing sheriff's building into an 80-bed full-service facility.

This scenario would cost $5,020,000.

When the existing jail was constructed 20 years ago, the jail at that time was converted into a facility presently being used by the Logan County Sheriff's Department. This scenario includes moving the sheriff to another location and converting the facility back to a jail. It was estimated that this conversion would support about 80 full-service beds.

A review of the facility revealed that it would require a major renovation to become a full-service facility. It could be used with minor renovations as a restricted custody center.

To convert the facility back into a full-service facility would also require that is be staffed with an estimated minimum of three posts round the clock.

"I don't think this scenario would work," said Jailer Phil Gregory. "We would have to hire a lot more staff plus it is optimal to have all parts of the jail on the same campus. There are also laws which govern having inmates in close proximity to the Emergency Communications Center (ECC-911)."

Scenario Two- Contract 100 overcrowded county inmates to other facilities.

This scenario would cost $1,520,000.

This scenario includes the assumption that space is available within a reasonable distance of Logan County and bed space could be obtained for the state per Diem of $31.34 per inmate per day. This scenario also assumes that meal costs, inmate supplies, and similar direct inmate costs would reduce. It is also assumed that Logan County would remain responsible for medical costs associated with the contracted out inmates. There would also be new costs to the county for inmate transportation.

"I don't think this scenario would work," said Gregory. "I have been calling around for months to get out some of the county inmates and no area jails want them. They have their own problems with overcrowding. Plus, this would place a strain on the sheriff's department having to transport inmates back and forth to court.

Scenario Three- Construct a 100 full-service bed addition to the existing jail.

This scenario would cost $6,633,275.

This scenario proposes no increase in the present jail staff.

Scenario Four- Construct a 100 full-service bed addition and support space addition.

This scenario would cost $8,837,375.

This scenario assumes adding one round the clock post and one administrative post.

Scenario Five- Construct a 100 full-service bed addition, support space, 80 bed restricted custody addition and budget for selective renovations to existing jail.

This scenario would cost $10,517,113.

This scenario assumes adding one round the clock post and one administrative post.

"I believe this to be the best scenario even though it is the most expensive," said Gregory. "I would, however, change the 80 restricted custody beds to 100, which could be done for a very little additional cost if we use bunk beds."

Gregory added he was trying to do the best job he was elected to do and understands these decisions are not to be made hastily.

"I think this is very good data to have moving into the future of the jail. I know this overcrowding problem is not just in Logan County, but it's Logan County I am elected to serve and our problems are real and we are going to have to take a long hard look at what we are going to do because I think the population with the increase in drug abuse is just going to continue to climb," said Gregory.