Past time to update jail, courthouse

[Source: “Past time to update jail, courthouse,” Press Citizen, 1 May 2013, by Mary L. Larew]

When I decided to write a letter regarding the jail initiative, I looked back to the letter I wrote in 2004 supporting Lonny Pulkrabek’s bid for the office of sheriff.

Here are excerpts from what I wrote almost nine years ago:

  • Pulkrabek has proposed new ideas for cutting down the population at the old county 46-bed jail … there have been hundreds of thousands of dollars wasted transporting prisoners to other counties, paying for their housing there and enriching those counties.
  • Surely it is time to try new approaches to save Johnson County tax dollars. Johnson County continues to grow and therefore, logically, the need for more space at the jail will also grow. Whatever can be done to help lower the costs should be respected and utilized until the voters decide we need a larger and safer jail.

Back to the present … very little has changed.

The county attorney and the sheriff have collaborated to provide specific programs to reduce the population of the jail, but it is impossible to correct all the limitations and problems within the current buildings.

Mary L. Larew

Iowa City

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Categories: Commentary, Endorsement


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