The Macon County Jail is deemed 'unsafe'

The new model Macon County Courthouse/Jail.

The Macon County Sheriff's Office opened the jail for public tours April 1-3.

Sheriff Kevin Shoemaker is asking for the public's support in the Macon County Courthouse/Jail plan. The plan is a safety restoration of the county offices, judicial services and jail house.

The existing jail was built in 1909 and has had little, if any, improvements since the date.

The jail currently has 28 beds and no space for female inmates. The county regularly spends excessive money transferring the females to the Randolph County Jail.

The sheriff says the intent of the entire project is to conform to modern safety standards, which will in turn increase public safety.

â??With a new jail assigned inmates are not going to be walked across the street. They will be housed in confinement until their day in court and they will then enter from the jail directly into the courtroom and when their hearing is over, they enter directly back into the jail,â?? says Shoemaker.

The total estimated cost of the renovation and expansion is $7.6 million. The Macon County Commission has voted to place a half cent sales tax on the April 8 ballot to repay expiring leasehold revenue bonds.

For more information, commissioners welcome citizens to attend their regular County Commission meetings each Monday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. There is also a DVD video presentation on YouTube. Contact County Commissioners at (660) 385-2913 for the link.