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Woodbury County Residents Attend Forum to Talk about Tuesday's Jail Referendum


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Woodbury County residents go to the polls next Tuesday to decide on the future of a proposed  50.3 million dollar bond to pay for a new jail. 

Woodbury County officials and jail employees say the current jail located downtown across from the courthouse is ridden with heating, cooling and plumbing problems that would cost more than 22 million dollars to fix. 

Siouxland Public Media held a public forum on the referendum today at the Sioux City Public Library.  Woodbury County Supervisor Keith Radig took part in the forum and explained to a rather surprised county resident that prisoners court appearances and cases will take place at the proposed new jail site, with the civil court remaining downtown.

“What the intent is now to have that all civil.”

“To literally move the district judges out of there?”

“they’re going to handle just civil, most of the district court judges handle just civil.”

“In Woodbury County Courthouse?
“Yeah, that was our meeting maybe a few weeks ago.”

“So the major jury trials will take place out at the other place.”

The new jail facility will be built on a plot in the vicinity of 28th street, just north of the Lake Forest Mobile Home Community.  The 100 thousand square foot facility will hold up to 450 inmates. 

The referendum next Tuesday will need a 50 percent affirmative vote to be approved.  Unless other sources of income are found, a property tax increase will pay for the new jail. Woodbury County Sheriff Dave Drew also took part in the jail referendum forum. 

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