Thursday May 26th, 2016 8:30PM

HCC looks at the old jail for a new C.I.

By Jerry Gunn Reporter
GAINESVILLE - The design contract for a new $4-million correctional institute was not approved as planned by Hall County Commissioners Thursday night. Commissioners want to look at an alternative; putting the C.I. in the old county jail downtown on Main Street.

With Correction Corporation of America's departure from the jail at year's end, Commissioner Jeff Stowe said Gainesville officials want the county to consider the jail for a new C.I. instead of building a new one.

"It's been brought to my attention that the city would like for us to look to see if it would make sense for it to go there and also if the Sheriff would entertain staying there for a longer period of time," Stowe said. "I'd like to give our staff time to look at those possibilities before we start design work on a new C.I."

Commissioners passed Stowe's motion to table the $248,000 C.I. design contract until the commission's first 2014 meeting January 9th. Commissioner Craig Lutz said he wanted staff to look at how much it would cost to operate the C.I. in the jail in addition to the 'retrofit' cost of converting it.

"That facility wasn't designed as a C.I. and my concern is trying to fit into that model," Lutz said.

Commission Chairman Dick Mecum also wanted the motion amended to check permits on housing state inmates in the jail.

"Look at the state permits and see where we're at with putting state inmates back in that facility," Mecum said.

(CCA) announced two weeks ago the company's plan to close its Gainesville illegal immigrant detention facility by the end of 2013. The company said the decision to leave came because of a continuous decline in the jail population.

Last year Hall County agreed to sell the property to the city of Gainesville
for $7.2 million and CCA leased the jail from the city.


Commissioners passed two resolutions doing away with the county's civil service board and calling for the appointment of the Chief Registrar by the Commission instead of the Senior Judge of the Hall Superior Court.

Chairman Mecum said due process on appeals would be delivered by an administrative law judge appointed by the commissioners instead of a three member Civil Service panel.

"They often times stray from the law and go more on feelings, friendships, or politics," Mecum said.

Mecum added a hearing officer who is an attorney would base decisions on the facts of the case.

Both resolutions require action by Hall County legislators during next year's General Assembly.


Commissioners drew opposition with their adoption of a joint agreement with the City of Gainesville supporting the proposed Glades Reservoir for future water supply.

Atlanta attorney Juliet Cohen, representing Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, said her environmental group believes the big North Hall reservoir is unnecessary.

"All the water that is dedicated or intended to go into Glades Reservoir is already being captured in Lake Lanier," Cohen said.

Cohen added that population projections used to justify the Glades project were inflated. Local opponent Billy Brookshire from Gainesville said the project would eventually drive taxes up and claimed consultant fees are 'bleeding the county dry'.


Commissioner Scott Gibbs kept his promise to table rezoning that huge mixed use development on Highway 365 but let developer Patrick Clark from Barker Street of Marietta make the request to give them time to work with property holders.

Gibbs said he wanted it delayed so developers could work out how the project would get county sewer.

"We would like to request a 30 day extension or deferral for this case," Clark told commissioners. "We feel this s a very big project and it merits all the attention necessary to make sure it is a success for the county and for the owners."

The 476 acre residential commercial project comes back before the commissioners at their second meeting in January and it will be re-advertized. Hall County planning commissioners recommended approval.
© Copyright 2016
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Missing Ga. bank director arrested in Brunswick
A bank director accused of losing millions of investors' dollars before vanishing last year was arrested Tuesday during a traffic stop in a city in south Georgia.
7:00PM ( 2 years ago )
S&P 500 index has its best year since 1997
The stock market closed out a record year with more all-time highs on Tuesday, giving U.S. indexes their biggest annual gains in almost two decades.
6:56PM ( 2 years ago )
Colorado readies for 'Green Wednesday' pot sales
Police were adding extra patrols around pot shops in eight Colorado towns that plan to allow recreational sales to anyone over 21 on Jan. 1.
1:52PM ( 2 years ago )
Business News
Sex offender held in Hall County for failing to register
A 47-year-old man was booked into the Hall County Jail Tuesday, being held without bond for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender, his second such arrest.
6:09PM ( 2 years ago )
Pharmacy robberies may involve same suspect
Oakwood Police Tuesday afternoon released details in a pharmacy robbery they're investigating, similar to one that happened in the Hall County Tuesday morning.
5:46PM ( 2 years ago )
Victim critical following apartment fire
A 41-year-old woman was in critical but stable condition Tuesday after being rescued from an apartment fire in Forsyth County late Monday afternoon.
3:16PM ( 2 years ago )
Local/State News
Medicaid growth creates gap of 5M without coverage; 409K in Ga.
About 5 million people will be without health care next year that they would have gotten simply if they lived somewhere else in America.
7:30AM ( 2 years ago )
Vandals spray graffiti against Kerry in West Bank
Suspected Jewish vandals set fire to three vehicles in a West Bank village early on Tuesday and sprayed threatening graffiti referring to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry ahead of his expected visit to the region, police said.
7:28AM ( 2 years ago )
Feds announce test sites for drone aircraft
The Federal Aviation Administration announced six states on Monday that will develop test sites for drones, a critical next step for the march of the unmanned aircraft into U.S. skies.
2:23PM ( 2 years ago )
Authorities release more details in Dawsonville Highway crash that injured six
Six people were transported to the hospital — one by air ambulance — following a two-vehicle crash Thursday afternoon on Dawsonville Highway.
By AccessWDUN Staff
8:08PM ( 22 minutes ago )
Two arrested in separate Gainesville child porn investigations
Two Gainesville men were arrested in separate investigations for child pornography Wednesday.
4:08PM ( 4 hours ago )
State patrol chopper practices water drops on Lanier island fire
​A Georgia State Patrol helicopter dumped water on an island fire in Lake Lanier yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon, but not to extinguish it.
1:44PM ( 6 hours ago )
Trump reaches the magic number to clinch nomination
Donald Trump has reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign
10:45AM ( 9 hours ago )
Four Hall County schools among those in the area to receive state's Greatest Gains awards
More than 187 Georgia public schools - including four in Hall County - will receive the state's Highest Performing or Greatest Gains school awards.
By AccessWDUN staff
9:52AM ( 10 hours ago )