Commissioners Withdraw Rezoning Request For New Jail

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Vigo County Commissioners have withdrawn their rezoning request to establish a new jail on the International Paper property.

A statement has been submitted today confirming that the Board of Commissioners of Vigo County have directed the County Attorney to withdrawal the petitions pending before the Terre Haute City Board of Zoning Appeals and the Terre Haute City Council to rezone the property on Praireton Road, commonly referred to as the International Paper property.

This means a new Vigo County Security Complex will not be located on the International Paper site.

According to the statement released to us by Commissioners Jon Marvel, Judith Anderson, and Brad Anderson, this decision does not change the belief that a new Vigo County Security Complex that can handle the detainee population today and provides sufficient room for growth is both necessary and prudent.

It also says in the statement that commissioners still believe that the International Paper property is the best site for the new security complex, but that the political reality of situation is clear and a majority of the city council does not share the same belief.

Another excerpt from the statement reads as the following:

“Be assured, we will continue to do exactly what we were elected to do, provide the Sheriff and the Courts with the tools they need to provide safety for the public-at-large. We will do everything we can to keep the costs of this project down, while still planning for the future. To be realistic, there is no doubt moving away from property we already own will cost more money in the long term. Possible costs include relocating utilities or making the eventual site suitable for construction and these were costs we hoped to avoid, but we must move forward and this is the best way to do that. Given that we have the opportunity to lay out some of the information we have gathered over the last 3 years, there are additional points which need to be made:

-Vigo County still needs a new jail.

-Delay costs the county money.

-Vigo County is not alone in outplacing inmates.

-Jails are needed and community demands for that space is high.

-Jails cannot operate by bed count alone.

-Many people who acknowledge the need for a jail want it placed “somewhere else.”

-Despite allegations to the contrary, jails are not unsafe or unsatisfactory neighbors, at least not in many other Indiana counties.

-We are committed to move forward.

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