Board briefed on $25.5 million Kewaunee County Jail

Members of the Kewaunee County Board have two months to decide whether they should issue the debt for a new $25.5 million jail building or let voters decide its fate. Kewaunee County Sheriff Matt Joski and Kewaunee County Administrator Scott Feldt spoke at length during Tuesday’s board meeting about the recently approved plans for the jail. The initially proposed safety building was also supposed to include offices for the Kewaunee County Sheriff’s Department and an evidence storage building. The department and the Jail Planning Committee have since stripped it down to a 41,000 square foot jail-only facility, one that could house 55 inmates and expand up to over 80. Those efforts saved approximately $10 million, only to see building costs rise and eat into the savings. The building will also be staffed with five people, down from the eight originally requested. Feldt believes the county has been fiscally frugal enough to forgo a referendum if the board doesn’t want to, with the average owner of a $200,000 home seeing their taxes go up $40.63 a year.

Citing the transparency and the hours spent on the process, Board chairperson Dan Olson told the board that the project itself could not be ground down any further.

Feldt said several county projects, including the construction of the administration and fairgrounds buildings, did not go to referendum. Supervisors followed with a variety of questions centered mostly on staffing concerns. The June meeting will include a presentation from the architect on June 14th at 6 p.m. You can watch the whole presentation from Feldt and Joski below.





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