Sheriff: Where we stand on county jail update
Over the past year I have written articles regarding some preliminary efforts related to the eventual update of our jail facility, and wanted to share where we are from a planning perspective.
In the fall of 2015 I had contacted the National Institute of Corrections to request assistance in the planning of an updated jail facility. This organization is a federal entity that offers assistance at no cost to local communities related to justice system analysis and planning coordination.
In April 2016, we were provided assistance through this organization to conduct a Justice and Jail Analysis. This process involved a thorough review of all components of our criminal justice process along with an evaluation of our current jail facility.
The next step was our involvement in what is known as a “Planning of New Institutions” workshop. This workshop took place in January 2017 and provided an opportunity to look at the various stages and considerations when planning for an updated correctional facility. Both of these efforts were valuable in setting the groundwork for consideration of next steps here in Kewaunee County.
As a result of the work we had completed, the recommendation was to develop an Request for Qualifications (RFQ), which specifies the scope of work to be conducted on our behalf by a professional consultant.
This RFQ will be separated into three phases. While there are numerous reasons for creating a phased approach to this project, the main one is to allow for a distinct pause at the conclusion of each phase so a full report of findings can be given by the consultant.
Also, sufficient consideration can be given to the information provided from that specific phase before moving forward to the next phase, which includes providing updates to the community and to allow for feedback.
The three phases of the RFQ are Needs Assessment, Operational and Architectural Program, and Schematic Design.
Although there will be a vast number of considerations we will have to consider at each and every decision point, the issue of community support and awareness is by far one of the most vital.
Regardless of what the data tells us or the information we gain by looking at trends and current legislation, the input we receive from our community is just as important, as this facility will ultimately belong to the citizens of Kewaunee County and we want it to be something we can all be proud of.
Currently the draft for the RFQ is under review and will be brought before the Law Enforcement committee in August. Once approved by the committee, it will be sent to the Personnel Committee for its consideration and ultimately come before the County Board. Again, this is a request for qualifications which will ultimately result in the selection of a consultant who will guide us as we begin the planning process.
Over the next few weeks, I will go into more detail about what is contained in each phase.
If you would like to review the report which resulted from the Justice and Jail Analysis, it can be viewed on our website at www.kewauneesheriff.com
I will continue to add documents and information to our website under the “Updates on Study for New Jail Facility” link and welcome any questions you may have.
Matt Joski is Kewaunee County Sheriff.
This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press-Gazette: Sheriff: Where we stand on county jail update