Idaho sheriff calls jail addition a ‘Band-Aid’

CALDWELL, Idaho — A plan to expand Canyon County Jail in southwest Idaho won’t solve some basic problems and would create more issues, Sheriff Kieran Donahue said.

“It is a Band-Aid on a flowing artery,” the sheriff told Canyon County commissioners at a meeting on Wednesday.

The proposed addition could house 80 more inmates at the jail that has faced lawsuits from the American Civil Liberties Union about overcrowding, the Idaho Press-Tribune reported (http://bit.ly/1gbIiz7).

Voters have repeatedly rejected proposals to pay for a new facility.

Donahue said the original building needs to be replaced and an addition wouldn’t eliminate many of the ACLU’s concerns or the high cost of operating the jail.

The proposed addition would increase the number of maximum and medium custody cells to 24. Another 56 cells would be added for general population inmates.

Capt. Daren Ward said the addition would put male and female inmates too close together and create an outdoor recreation schedule that would have to run nearly 24 hours a day. Meals and laundry would have to go through the booking area, increasing foot traffic and the risk of contraband being passed between inmates.

The addition would also require hiring 15 new deputies at a cost of $1.25 million to start and a $1 million annual cost after that. Ward said a new facility with a modern design would allow the staff already available, plus a few additions, to operate it.

Donahue said he would like to see a scaled-back version of a plan for a new facility on 24 acres the city bought in 2007 but hasn’t used because voters haven’t passed a bond to pay for a new jail.

“Whoever lives here has a stake because that money costs us down the road, and we need to be good stewards of the taxpayers,” Donahue said.

More in Local News

A close friendship is lost to fire

An 88-year-old Smokey Point mobile home resident died despite a valiant effort by neighbors.

Jensen Webster sorts through food stuffs at the Sultan High School in Sultan on March 14, 2018. (Kevin Clark / The Daily Herald)
Sultan school children take charge to help their peers

The Sky Valley Youth Coalition has installed pantries at schools so kids can take food home.

Everett woman found dead identified as 21-year-old

There were no obvious signs of trauma on the body of Brianna Leigh Nyer.

Ivar’s in Mukilteo closes for disinfection after illnesses

The Snohomish Health District said it’s not certain what caused some patrons to get sick.

State will spend millions on task forces and reports

Here are eight undertakings that will incite possible action by lawmakers in the future.

Everett man admits deadly slashing of 2 Maltby-area women

John Dimitri Kuljis Jr. pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and first-degree assault.

State: Secret deal endangers Marysville Strawberry Festival

The “bizarre” agreement promises a former leader up to $175,000 if the group fails to meet his demands.

Front Porch

EVENTS National Astronomy Day The Everett Astronomical Society will lead an all-day… Continue reading

Bond sale reveals Paine Field terminal cost is about $40M

Propeller Airports, which is building on land leased from the county, raised the money in February.

Most Read