Although some groups are pushing for a renovation and expansion of the Tehama County Jail, at least one elected official is speaking out against it.
Proponents say that additional bed space is needed, especially after the state implemented it's prisoner realignment program, which has shifted certain sentenced offenders from serving time in state prisons to county lock-ups.
They say the extra 34,360 square feet and 64 beds are needed to accommodate the needs of people who are serving longer sentences, as it will allow space for rehabilitation and educational programs.
The main point of contention, according to the local mayor, is that it would close a portion of a local street; a second concern is that the town library will need to be ripped down so the lot could be re-purposed. Sources close to the project say the library would be relocated to a different part of the town.
The mayor says the town frequently closes off streets to hold events downtown, and losing part of one road to accommodate the jail expansion will cause problems.
She also wants to know why that specific area needs to be used; there rare other, vacant lots outside of downtown that are available.
Tehama County Sheriff Dave Hencratt has since fired back, saying that not only is the expansion needed to help preserve public safety, but that the proposed closed section of Madison Street could be reopened for special events.
Not adding bed space could also be problematic, he said, especially if the facility is functioning at full capacity. If the lock-up becomes overcrowded, that could force the corrections department to start releasing people early.
Read the full story here: Tehama County Jail expansion meets opposition from mayor