Lucas County eyes “Plan B” for new jail location

Lucas County eyes "Plan B" for new jail location
Published: Nov. 22, 2022 at 7:29 PM EST
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Lucas County is now looking at “Plan B” for its new jail location.

“Plan A” was the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department site but as those negotiations continue, prices continue to rise.

This proposed site is also in downtown Toledo, so that would not change but making this one happen might be quicker and cheaper.

Near the corner of Southard Avenue and Canton Street sits the Lucas County Facilities Building. In the next few years, it could be the site of the new Lucas County Jail.

“What is the cost-benefit of this site versus the delay with the health department and we’re trying to maximize the benefit for the community,” said Lucas County Commissioner Gary Byers.

This is now “Plan B” for Lucas County as it tries to find a new home for its jail which is outdated and costly.

Plan A is the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department site, which sits right next door to the municipal court. However, negotiations between the county, city, and the health department board are dragging on.

“It’s just a very complicated process. The health department is important for the community too and so we’re not going to say you’ve got to make a snap decision because we want to do this. It’s a collaborative effort,” said Byers.

The longer the negotiations continue, the higher the price for a new jail due to inflation.

Lucas County already owns several properties around this Southard and Canton area which sits right behind Lucas County Juvenile Court.

Other pieces of property may need to be acquired and this site is far from a done deal. In fact, the health department idea isn’t off the table.

“In the big picture, I still think it could be faster than moving with the health department. And that’s kind of why we’re looking at that alternative as well,” said Byers.

Byers said a new site would not mean a new funding source as there are still no plans to go back to voters and ask for levy money.

The county still plans to pay for it through its current dollars and the savings they have developed over the last few years.

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