Sheriff and county officials take a final walk-through of the new public safety complex
|Gale Jensen and Bill Downard examine the video monitoring systems at the new public safety complex.|
The final walk through of the new public safety complex took place on July 18. Sheriff Lamar Guymon, Commissioner Randy Johnson along with other officers and county officials toured the facility with Todd Kitchen and Jay Bunker from Sahara, the contractor on the project.
The tour began in the lobby area, Kitchen said, "We were able to include $100,000 worth of add ons to the project already with cost savings and will have a little more to add."
The tour continued to the dispatch room. The cameras were checked and the control panel which opens and closes the doors. A safeguard in the system will not open another door until the door behind is closed. Officers working in dispatch will remain on shift for 12 hours, the dispatch center is locked and the windows will be tinted. They will leave the dispatch center only for breaks and meals. Information is passed back and forth with a window similar to a bank teller's drive up window.
Kitchen said they will be adding little antennas on the walls so that the officers cell phones will continue to work within the jail. The new facility boasts ample office space with a bullet proof window in the lobby. The lobby area will be a receiving area for visitors to the facility. Any suspects arriving at the jail are taken immediately into the sallyport, which is like a large garage with huge doors which immediately lock when the police vehicle enters. The suspect is moved to a booking area where a camera will take their picture. The jail has two holding tanks.
|The jail will be the newest in the state.|
In addition to the large office area there will now be adequate office space for the deputies, sergeants and detectives. The facility has a break room, weight room, conference room, evidence room, record room, medical-first-aid room and numerous other rooms with various uses. There is also a room which serves as an education room for the inmates. They receive rehabilitation, can go to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and anger management classes. They can learn about computers and learn life skills. A physician's assistant from the medical clinic will come to the jail facility once a week to see anyone in need of medical care.
The facility has a state of the art kitchen facility. Detective Bill Downard will be trained in the use of all the new equipment in the kitchen as well as the laundry room. The inmates in the past have done their own laundry and cooking and will continue to do so.
The facility has 80 beds and will house female inmates as well, a capability the old jail does not have. Sheriff Guymon said, "We spend approximately $2-3,000 a month with other facilities in housing our female inmates. It will be a cost savings to us. Currently the females have to go to Richfield or to Carbon."
The inmate portion of the facility has a commons-social area where they eat their meals. A television and games are also available. There is an outdoors enclosed play area with a net over the top so nothing can be thrown over the wall and down into the area where the prisoners are.
The walkthrough included a tour of each room of the facility to see if items on the punch list had been fixed adequately as well as to look for any other problems or areas of concern. The major area of concern was in the sallyport area. The concrete has cracked due to expansion. There weren't enough expansion joints cut in the large areas of concrete. Kitchen said when the ping test was done the concrete tested at 5,500 psi which is really good. It meets the required 3,500 psi. So, the concrete is hard concrete and will hold up, the integrity of the concrete didn't seem to be in question, but the aesthetic quality had been jeopardized. Kitchen suggested a concrete expert come and take a look to see what he thinks and inform the commissioners and the municipal building authority of his findings. It was agreed that the problem would be looked into further.
|Sheriff Lamar Guymon looks over the new facility.|
An anticipated move-in date will be after the county fair and the pageant; possibly in September. The most important item left to be completed will be the installation of the communications tower. Having the communications system up and running will precede the move. Also everything in dealing with the inmates must be in order before a move can take place.
Sheriff Guymon said, "I am really pleased with the facility. The workmanship is very good and the design is excellent. It will be the newest jail in the state. It will improve the working conditions for our officers. It will make things safer for the officers and for the inmates. We will be able to segregate inmates, which we haven't been able to do before. We will be able to separate those with felony charges from those with misdemeanor charges, which will make it safer for the inmates as well. The school programs we will introduce will be a benefit to the inmates.
"The working conditions for the officers will improve 100 percent. Right now, they don't have any private space to work on their reports or the other things they need to do. The new offices will be a great benefit to them. Overall we are very satisfied with the new facility," said Sheriff Guymon.