The Board of Supervisors this week polished and approved the Sheriff’s response to a Grand Jury report that called for the construction of a new jail in the North County, starting with a timeline and fundraising. The Grand Jury’s findings showed what the Sheriff and supervisors have known for a long time: Inmates are sleeping on floors (actually on mattresses placed on cell floors), and violence has increased partly because nonviolent offenders are released early if they are jailed at all. The county’s response to the recommendation that property should be purchased was that it has conducted a land appraisal of the Laguna County Sanitation District property and drafted an Environmental Impact Report for that site, to be released at the end of this month. It has also drafted architectural plans and earmarked $2 million toward the estimated $153 million cost of a new jail. The county reported that it completed a timeline years ago, but is behind schedule.

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