GENEVA, Ind. (21Alive) – Things got heated when Adams County Commissioners proposed building a new jail in downtown Decatur, in addition to a new courthouse.
People at Wednesday night's meeting were very vocal about their disapproval of the new jail being proposed to be built on 1stSstreet in downtown Decatur—and that was just from the people in Geneva.
Commissioners are making their way around Adams County and holding informational meetings regarding the new facilities. The current jail is over capacity and too old to be renovated, and they’re also proposing building a new superior court facility that would house multiple offices and comply with security and handicap measures.
County residents understand the need, but so far, over 500 have signed a petition saying to put the jail somewhere else.
"I own a tavern and basically it being located behind my business wouldn't be good for it, and the growth of Decatur does not need a jail right downtown where we're looking to put a river greenway in. There's going to be a park, a water park set up too, an amphitheater. It would just make it hard to close the street down when we have big motorcycle groups come in, Halloween parades, farmers markets and stuff like that,” said Chris Faurote, a concerned business owner.
Residents suggested building the jail in industrial park, away from downtown at Wednesday’s meeting, but one commissioner admitted they hadn't considered that location.
Commissioners say no decision will be made any time soon, and for now, it is just a proposal. However, commissioners say their main goal is to keep the jail and courts close for when inmates need to be transferred, and they want to build a facility that will save them on expansions and renovations in the future.
The next meeting is Monday, May 12 at 7 p.m. at Riverside Center, 231 E. Monroe Street.
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