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Iron County seeks approval from voters for brand new jail

Posted at 7:40 AM, Oct 10, 2023

IRON COUNTY, Utah — The Iron County Board of Commissioners is trying to get the approval of voters to build a brand new jail, which they say is desperately needed.

At a meeting Monday night, the board proposed a bond that would build a new facility in order to provide housing to inmates, create jobs and replace existing structures that are deteriorating.

The current jail has been in use since 1987 and the county says they can't make any changes because of restrictions.

Water line issues, cracks from settling and out-of-date electrical work plague the currently used jail and the county wants to start from scratch.

In a previous bond, land for the new jail was already purchased.

Now, the board needs to get construction plans approved by voters. In total, the bond would designate $89,950,000 to the jail's construction.

Approval for the plan really just comes down to money and if residents are willing to pay.

"It's $153 per year," explained Luke Little, Auditor for Iron County during the meeting. "That bond, once it's paid off, then that would fall off of your property taxes. It would not continue on like the truth in taxation would. That comes out to $12.75 per month."

County officials report the jail will generate a revenue of between $2.5 and five million dollars a year after salaries are paid and once the bond is paid off.

Residents will be able to cast their vote on the bond proposal this November.